Ponaganset High science teacher named 2015 R.I. Teacher of the Year

In a surprise ceremony this morning at Ponaganset High School, Governor Lincoln D. Chafee announced that David Moscarelli, a science teacher at the school, has been selected as the 2015 Rhode Island Teacher of the Year.

Mr. Moscarelli, who has taught at Ponaganset High for 22 years – his entire teaching career – now becomes a candidate for the 2015 National Teacher of the Year award.

“David Moscarelli is not only recognized as an excellent classroom teacher who sets high standards and provides his students with individual support, but he is also highly regarded as a technology leader at Ponaganset High School,” Governor Chafee said. “He has devoted his professional life to classroom teaching, and he will represent our state well as the 2015 Teacher of the Year.”

“Because of his deep commitment to science, digital learning, and technology in our classrooms, David Moscarelli is an excellent representative of the teaching profession in Rhode Island,” said Eva-Marie Mancuso, Chair of the Board of Education. “His fellow teachers recognize him as a consummate educator, a technology guru, and a teacher-leader – the perfect choice for Rhode Island Teacher of the Year.”

 “As the instructional technology coordinator, David Moscarelli is committed to using technology to provide each student with personalized support for success,” said Deborah A. Gist, Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education. “He takes pride in the fact that, under his leadership, Ponaganset High became one of the first schools in the country to adopt digital portfolios of student work. As one his colleagues put it: David Moscarelli stands alone as … an outstanding teacher and contributor to our school community. Congratulations to David Moscarelli, our new Teacher of the Year!”

A Providence resident and a 1992 graduate of the University of Rhode Island who also holds a master’s degree in biology from Brown University, David Moscarelli came to Ponaganset High School, in the Foster-Glocester Regional School District, directly from college and he has taught at the school ever since. His teaching covers a wide range of science courses, including alternative energy, biology, physical science, AP environmental science, and two courses he has designed and taught: animal behavior and ecosystems.

As the digital-portfolio coordinator for the school for the past 11 years, he led the design and implementation at Ponaganset High of one of the first digital-portfolio graduation requirements in the country. For the past 19 years, he has been the instructional-technology coordinator at the school, working with his colleagues on the integration of technology into the classroom.

At the conclusion of the ceremony today, Inskip’s Warwick Automall provided David Moscarelli with a Smart Electric Drive car for his use during his time as Teacher of the Year. Other generous donors who have supported the Rhode Island Teacher of the Year program include the Hassenfeld Family Foundation and the Rhode Island Foundation, as well as Alex and Ani, the Bank of America, Paul Choquette, Collette Tours, Cox Communications, Ned Handy, Hasbro, Johnson & Wales University, and Smart Technology.