Larry Johnson, an instructional specialist for Charles County Public Schools (CCPS), was recently named the 2014 Arc of Southern Maryland Charles County Educator of the Year. The award recognizes educators who are dedicated to ensuring that children and young adults with special needs have access to opportunities for success. He was nominated for the award by Amy Hollstein, assistant superintendent of instruction for CCPS, for his passion for working with students with special needs.
“Mr. Johnson is an outstanding educator who is passionate about the education of students with disabilities. He has worked tirelessly with special and general educators to ensure that all students have instruction that meets their unique learning needs. He is a true asset to Charles County Public Schools,” Hollstein said in a nomination statement.
Johnson has worked for CCPS since 2010, where he began working as a special education teacher at General Smallwood Middle School. He took a position in 2011 as an instructional specialist at the Jesse L. Starkey Administration Building, which houses the administrative offices for the school system. He works directly with the special education department and serves as a support for special education teachers and students. He also plans and implements professional development sessions and trainings that focus on improving academics for students with disabilities.
Johnson said he was humbled to receive the award and credits those he works with as aiding to his passion in working with students with disabilities. “I have been blessed with the opportunity to learn from colleagues with many years of experience and practice in ensuring equitable access and opportunity for students with diverse learning needs. I would also like to acknowledge all of the educators in the county for their hard work and dedication in ensuring the success of our students,” Johnson said.
Norma Dallas from the Arc of Southern Maryland presented Johnson with the award at the Board of Education’s Jan. 13 meeting. Prior to joining CCPS, Johnson worked at the High Road Upper School, an alternative school in Washington D.C., and as a teacher with Prince George’s County Public Schools.
Johnson has a bachelor’s degree in government, law and sociology from Lafayette College and a master’s degree in special education from Trinity University. He is working on a doctorate degree in special education from Walden University.
Charles County Public Schools provides 26,500 students in grades prekindergarten through 12 with an academically challenging education. Located in Southern Maryland, Charles County Public Schools has 36 schools that offer a technologically advanced, progressive and high quality education that builds character, equips for leadership and prepares students for life, careers and higher education.
The Charles County public school system does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age or disability in its programs, activities or employment practices. For inquiries, please contact Dr. Patricia Vaira, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 Coordinator (students) or Pamela K. Murphy, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 coordinator (employees/ adults), at Charles County Public Schools, Jesse L. Starkey Administration Building, P.O. Box 2770, La Plata, MD 20646; 301-932-6610/301-870-3814. For special accommodations call 301-934-7230 or TDD 1-800-735-2258 two weeks prior to the event.