Brookside Place Teacher of the Year 2018/19

(above) Brookside Place Elementary (BPS) School Kindergarten Teacher Anne Marie Francis is named the BPS Classroom Teacher of the Year.
Photo by Cranford Public Schools

Mrs. Francis Named Brookside Place School Teacher of the Year, 2018-19

Brookside Place Elementary School (BPS) is pleased to announce that Mrs. Anne Marie Francis has been selected as the Classroom Teacher of the Year from nominations made by the school community as part of the New Jersey Department of Education 2018-19 Governor’s Educator of the Year Program.

Mrs. Francis has served the Cranford school district for 20 years, with 11 of those years teaching kindergarten at BPS. She has also taught grades 4 through 8 as both a classroom and gifted and talented teacher, grades K to 8 as a character education coordinator and grades 9 through 12 as a service learning coordinator.

She was a kindergartener herself when she decided she’d one day emulate her kindergarten teacher and sit around a circle, teaching kindergarteners. “I feel that teaching chose me!” Mrs. Francis said. “It’s all I ever wanted to be.”

Before the start of every day, she said, she reads to herself a page-long doctrine she has compiled entitled “This is What I Believe,” which lists statements of positivity to guide her teaching philosophies. “I believe I can make the biggest difference in a child’s ability to learn. I believe all children are filled with curiosity and it is my responsibility to illuminate their path to discovery,” she said.

In her cheerful kindergarten classroom, Mrs. Francis said she creates an environment for learning based upon those beliefs and what she has learned in life to “create a place that is nurturing, safe, inviting, rewarding, stimulating, loving and fun!”

She is very humbled by her nomination as the BPS Classroom Teacher of the Year. “I believe that the BPS staff is a truly exceptional group of professionals who collaboratively push each individual along to reach their full potential. This honor belongs to all of us,” Mrs. Francis said.

The Governor’s Educator of the Year Program highlights educational innovation, student achievement, the rewards of teaching, and important services outside the classroom environment that lead to student success. Further, it seeks to attract public attention to the positive aspects of our educational system. For more information, please visit:

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