Desert Sands Teacher Allison Cyr Named California Teacher of the Year
INDIO — Allison Cyr, third grade teacher at Lyndon B. Johnson Elementary School in Indio, was today named a 2021 California Teacher of the Year by State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond.
The school is a part of Desert Sands Unified School District. Cyr was named the district’s 2019-2020 Elementary School Teacher of the Year. On June 3, then Riverside County Superintendent of Schools Judy D. White, Ed.D., set up a surprise Zoom meeting to inform Allison that she had been named a Riverside County Teacher of the Year. In accepting the county award, Allison stated, “I hope that I can continue to tell my students that they can make a difference and that one person can really change the world.”
Cyr has been teaching for nine years and notes that she knew as a child that she wanted to be a teacher, remembering lining up her stuffed animals and creating worksheets for them to complete. With reading a challenge during her childhood, she remains committed to the importance of reading aloud to her students and urges everyone to spend time reading to children, no matter their age. Reading aloud was the therapy that doctors prescribed to heal her vocal chord paralysis. Projects in the Cyr classroom include writing get-well cards and sending messages to people all over the United States who are cancer patients and first-responders. Allison lives the life she talks about and was a kidney donor to a colleague. She said that, “The beauty of being a teacher is that there is no such thing as an ideal day. As a class, our goal is to always be better than the day before.”
Her principal, Brad Fisher, says, “I cannot think of many people more deserving of this honor than Allison Cyr. Ms. Cyr is the consummate professional, she fosters high expectations, and knows how to build relationships within the school and the LBJ community.” DSUSD Superintendent Scott Bailey shared the district’s pride by saying, “Allison Cyr represents her profession, her colleagues, and the Desert Sands Unified School District as a model educator. I am proud to see her talent, commitment, and compassion recognized through this prestigious award”.
Allison joins four other California Teachers of the Year being celebrated. State Superintendent Thurmond commented, “In a year that might be the most challenging in all of our lives, these five inspiring teachers have made profound differences in the lives of their students and communities,” he said. “I’m proud that these educators are receiving this prestigious honor for their continued effort to rise above the challenges and connect with students even during unimaginable circumstances.” The four additional award recipients are Jim Klipfel of William S. Hart High Union School District in Los Angeles County, Keisa Brown from Riverside Unified School District, Laura E. Gomez Contreras from Santa Ana Unified School District, and Nora Wynne of Humboldt County’s McKinleyville Union School District.
For more information on the award program, visit the CDE’s California Teachers of the Year web page.
- Allison Cyr: DSUSD