Essex County Freeholders Honor Colleen Zappulla of Bloomfield for Being Named the 2019 Teacher of the Year

(Front row from left-to-right) Freeholder President Brendan Gill, Colleen Zappula,Bloomfield Councilmen Ted Gamble and Rich Rockwell, Freeholder Leonard Luciano. (Back row from left-to-right) Jess Salinas and Ellen Rodgers Krentzfrom the Bloomfield Board of Education,FreeholdersRobert MercadoandCarlos Pomares. PHOTO BY GLEN FRIESON

(Bloomfield, NJ) –During its Wednesday, April 10, 2019,meeting at Bloomfield Town Hall the Essex County Board of Chosen Freeholders honored Colleen Sceurman Zappulla of Bloomfieldfor being namedthe 2019 Teacher of the Year at Gantner Avenue School in Elmwood Park.

The Commendation was sponsored by District 5 Freeholder Carlos Pomares of Bloomfield, along with Freeholder President Brendan Gill of Montclair. Freeholder Pomares congratulated Mrs. Zappulla on winning her award, and recognized how proud both he and the community of Bloomfield are of her work as a teacher for so many years.

Colleen was born and raised in Bloomfield and is proud to be a lifetime resident. She represents the 4th generation of Bloomfield residents in her family.She attended St. Thomas the Apostle school in Bloomfield for grades K –8,and Bloomfield High School where she played basketball and softball. It was there that she realized her desire to become a teacher.

After graduation, she worked at Westbridge Academy in Bloomfieldassisting students ages 5-21 with severe behavior, emotional, and learning disabilities, and there she received the Teacher of the Year Award in 2013. A 3rd generation teacher, she feels fortunate to have had her grandmother, mother, and sister to look up to as role models for teaching.In addition, she is thankful to have learned the traits of hard work and dedication from her father and brother.

In 2014, she transitioned to the Elmwood Park Public School District at Gantner Avenue School where she continued towork with students who struggle with the same challenging issues. Her belief is, “If they can’t learn the way we teach, then we must teach the way they learn.”

Currently, Colleen is working on creating a Code of Conduct for elementary schools,as well as serving as the teacher liaison between the Parent Teacher Organization and staff.

She is married to her husband Edward Zappulla who she thanks for all of his support and understanding of the demands of her life’s passion and profession. Friends,family,members of the Bloomfield Board of Education, and members of the Bloomfield Town Council were all on hand to wish Colleen well and congratulate heron thisgreat accomplishment.

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For Additional Information:
Kyalo Mulumba, Public Information Officer
Essex County Board of Chosen Freeholders
973-621-4452 (phone) 973-621-5695 (fax)