SUPERINTENDENT'S AWARDS 2013
The annual Superintendent’s Awards for Excellence in Museum Education Competition recognizes the outstanding achievements in California museum programs that serve K-12 students and/or educators. The competition is the joint project of the California Association of Museums (
Six California museums have been selected to receive an award for excellence in museum education, chosen by the State Superintendent of Public Instruction, Tom Torlakson. At least one third of the awards were given to eligible organizations with annual operating budgets less than $2 million. The 2013 winners are:
Aquarium of the Pacific - Interactive Videoconferencing Program
Interactive Videoconferencing programs, led by education staff, integrate visuals of marine life, a real-time look at Aquarium exhibits, and dynamic interactive lessons (such as dissecting a squid) to provide ocean science learning opportunities for groups such as senior centers, youth in juvenile detention centers, and school classrooms with limited access to aquatic life.
Computer History Museum - Get Invested: Case Studies in Innovation
Get Invested integrates 21st century skills, STEM learning, historical inquiry, and entrepreneurial thinking. High school students in California and abroad collaborate to develop innovative technology-based solutions for global social issues and present their ideas to industry professionals.
Crocker Art Museum - Art Ark
The Crocker's Art Ark, a mobile art education center designed for students in Pre-K through 8th grades, brings original works of art and activities to schools throughout the Sacramento region.
Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) - Art Programs with the Community: LACMA On-Site
LACMA On-site provides artist-led workshops, curriculum materials, and professional development opportunities to partner elementary and middle schools in the Los Angeles Unified School District and in local public libraries. These programs and materials are designed to stimulate critical thinking, support creative expression, and provide meaningful experiences with art.
Palo Alto Art Center - Project LOOK!
Project LOOK!, the Palo Alto Art Center’s school tour program, offers students in grades K-5 an interactive exhibition tour led by volunteer docents combined with a related hands-on art activity taught by professional artist educators, in a fun, accessible, and welcoming setting.
Roseville Utility Exploration Center - Planet Protector School Tours
The "Planet Protector" school programs for elementary school children (grades 1st-6th) are designed to relay stewardship messages related to energy and water conservation, watershed protection, and waste reduction and support the California Content Standards in science.
The competition received 20 entries representing a diverse range of institutions and demonstrating the vibrant contributions museums make to California’s K-12 educational system. After a formal evaluation and scoring by the Selection Committee, the State Superintendent of Public Instruction, Tom Torlakson, chose the final recipients. The scoring rubric is available online, as well as the Guidelines and Entry Instructions. The members of the Selection Committee are listed below for your reference. The 2012 winners are posted online at www.calmuseums.org/superintendentsawards2012.
The winning program representatives will be presented with their awards by the State Superintendent of Public Instruction (or his designee) at the 2013 CAM annual luncheon in Santa Barbara, February 21, 2013, at the Fess Parker’s DoubleTree Resort, held in conjunction with CAM’s annual conference. Representatives will be asked to give a short presentation at a session immediately following the luncheon, from 1:45pm to 3:00pm.
If you have any questions, please contact Celeste DeWald, CAM's Executive Director, at 831-471-9970 x102 or email@example.com.
Selection Committee Members
Rita Bell is the director of Education Programs at Monterey Bay Aquarium, where her efforts focus on providing professional development programs for pre-service and in-service teachers, designing and implementing leadership development programs for teens, providing quality field trip experiences for over 80,000 students annually and partnering with community groups to enhance conservation education and advocacy. Before joining the aquarium staff in 1997, she taught middle school math and science, served as school vice-principal, and was a member of the school board. Rita earned her BA at UC Santa Cruz and MA at University of San Francisco. Rita also served as a board member and president of the National Marine Educators Association. The Monterey Bay Aquarium received a 2012 Superintendent's Award for their WATCH program (see 2012 awards).
Craig Cheslog is the Principal Advisor to California State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson. Prior to joining the California Department of Education in January 2011, he served as the District Director for then-Assemblymember Tom Torlakson, after previously serving in the same capacity for then-State Senator Torlakson. He is a former national president, and current Honorary Chair, of the Alpha Delta Phi Society, a coeducational literary and social society around the United States, and serves on the boards of the Lamorinda Democratic Club and Planned Parenthood Shasta-Pacific Action Fund. He graduated from Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine, with a bachelor's degree in government and legal studies with a minor in education.
Jennifer Olson is the Program Director of "My Masterpieces: Discovering Art in My Community," a CAMMY award-winning arts program of the Pasadena Educational Foundation created in partnership with Pasadena Unified School District and ten local museums. As an independent museum and arts education consultant from 2006-2011, she provided curriculum development, evaluation, and program design services for Los Angeles-area museums and school districts. Jen holds a BS in Elementary Education from Boston University with a focus on Community-based Settings, and an MA in Art Education from Cal State Northridge with a focus on Museum Education.