Provided by Prince William County Schools (PWCS)
Battlefield High School Teacher George Bishop has always sought to bring quality technology and engineering educational opportunities to his students. In June, Bishop learned he was selected for one of the highest honors given to technology and engineering education classroom teachers. He was named the 2020 Virginia Technology and Engineering Education Association’s (VTEEA) High School Teacher of the Year.
“It was a total shock and surprise to be honest. With all the excellent technology and engineering educators in the Commonwealth, to be named as the best among them is extremely humbling,” Bishop said.
Bishop was instrumental in bringing Project Lead the Way (PLTW), a premier engineering program for high school students, to Battlefield High in 2015. Thanks to Bishop, fellow teachers Michael Spudic and Nasir Ayoub (now at Charles J. Colgan Sr. High School), and PWCS Supervisor of Career and Technical Education Doug Wright, the program grew from one offering, Introduction to Engineering Design, to four PLTW courses for students in just a few short years. When his students expressed their desire for an additional engineering course, Bishop made it happen, even during a pandemic.
“I took the Engineering Design and Development course (for instructors) which was totally online … ” said Bishop. “ …[T]his school year, our students at Battlefield have the opportunity to participate in five PLTW Engineering courses.”
Bishop’s efforts to grow engineering and design opportunities helped earn Battlefield recognition as a PLTW Distinguished School for the 2019-20 school year.
Dedication to Students
Bishop also serves as the school’s National Honor Society advisor. He founded and sponsors the Battlefield Technology Student Association (TSA), a Career and Technical Student Organization. TSA is a professional association, not a club. After graduating high school, students can join the Technology Engineering Education Collegiate Association, as well as the Virginia Technology and Engineering Education Association.
Bishop goes above and beyond for his students, current and former, helping them obtain internships and jobs, and assisting with scholarships and college applications. He earned his commercial driver’s license so he could drive a school. He wanted to ensure his students could go on field trips that exposed them to practical application of technology education. Students and colleagues listed numerous examples of Bishop’s dedication to preparing students for life beyond high school in nominating him for the 2019-20 Prince William Teacher of the Year.
“I am proud of the way former and current students take time to check in to keep me up to date on what is happening in their lives just as I take the time to check in with my former school teachers,” said Bishop. “Remaining relevant in their lives, being a positive influence, celebrating their successes, and assisting them to learn from their disappointments keeps me going.”
Bishop accepted his Technology Teacher of the Year award virtually as part of the VTEEA Summer Conference business meeting in July.
Bishop will also receive the International Technology and Engineering Educators Association (ITEEA) “Teacher Excellence Award” during the ITEEA’s 83rd Annual Conference in Denver next March.