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February 9th, 2023 - Big Apple Awards 2023: Nomination Information and Backpack Letter for Families


Dear families and staff of P.S. 211 Elm Tree Elementary School,


We would like to take this opportunity to inform you that the Big Apple Awards (BAA) nomination process for the upcoming cohort of Fellows for the 2023–24 school year is now open through February 28


You and all members of the school community (including families, students, and community-based organizations) are invited to nominate a teacher for the Big Apple Award.    


Nominations can be made by submitting the teacher’s name and school to the DOE All Stars website. Note that you do not need a DOE login to nominate a teacher through this portal, as individuals without a DOE login may sign in as a guest). 


Alternatively, you or your school community members can email the teacher’s name and school name to [email protected].


The Big Apple Awards recognize and celebrate New York City teachers who:

  • Inspire students to be their best selves, dream, and advocate for their future
  • Model equitable learning with high expectations for the diverse and dynamic needs of all students
  • Affirm students’ identities, unique gifts, and genius
  • Enrich their school communities by partnering with families, community members, and community-based organizations


By honoring these teachers, we recognize all those who go above and beyond to serve our students and families!


Recipients are notified of their award in a surprise appearance from the chancellor, deputy chancellors, and other members of the NYC education community. This allows us to honor and celebrate these exceptional teachers in their teaching environment, sometimes even with their students and colleagues! Big Apple Award recipients are celebrated by the chancellor and may have the opportunity to participate in the Big Apple Fellowship, which includes engagement in leadership development sessions and the Chancellor’s Teacher Advisory Council.


The specific criteria used to evaluate Big Apple Award nominees is as follows:


Impact on Student Learning

  • The teacher takes a holistic approach to teaching and learning that affirms and uplifts students’ cultures and communities.
  • The teacher facilitates learning that fosters student-agency and ownership, while creating opportunities for students to co-design curriculum and their learning experiences.
  • The teacher fosters relationships and build trust with students to allow for authentic collaboration in culturally responsive and sustaining ways.
  • The teacher has an asset-based approach and a growth mindset for themselves and their students, empowering their students to succeed in their academic and social lives.


Instructional Practices

  • The teacher uses academically rigorous and intellectually challenging instruction through a variety of teaching methods, creates a warm and welcoming environment in the classroom that actively engages students in learning, and acts as a collaborative teacher by working with others to innovate and hone their practice
  • The teacher establishes trust with colleagues, advocates for students, and allows for true collaboration and equitable instruction.


Contributions to School Community

  • The teacher demonstrates effective leadership in and out of the classroom and shows relentless efforts to build strong family-community ties
  • The teacher builds trust with families and school leaders to become true partners in the school community.
  • The teacher adapts to family, cultural, and community needs, enriching their school communities through partnership with cultural institutions and community-based organizations.


For additional information please visit FAQ link below:

FAQ page


Please see below for the English version of the Big Apple Awards 2023 Letter for Families:


To view/download the Big Apple Awards 2023 Letter for Families in other languages please visit the link below:

Big Apple Awards 2023 Letter for Families (All Languages)


For more information feel free to contact Ms. Gisella Catarine, our school’s Parent Coordinator, at 929-260-0084.


We would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your participation in voting for this year’s Big Apple Awards and hope you have a wonderful rest of your week!




P.S. 211 Elm Tree Family