Bonnie Garrett is a renowned educator who has dedicated her professional career to the advancement of others through education for the last 20 years. As a classroom teacher and teacher leader, she utilizes a vast array of instructional technologies to aid in the teaching of STEM concepts through activities, projects, and problem-based learning. Ms. Garrett also focuses on learning about the educational differences of various countries and being named a NEA Global Fellow has afforded her the opportunity to have first-hand collaborations with educators in at least one other country, which prompts her to stay abreast of the status of students in the United States as compared to the same grade-level students in other countries, particularly in science.
Ms. Garrett strives to impact educational change by serving on various local, state, and national committees and organizations. These committees and organizations include the Alabama Council for Leadership Development, the Project Lead the Way Master Teacher Leadership Team, the Alabama Education Association (AEA) Minority Leadership Team, the AEA Women’s Leadership Team, the AEA Professional Rights & Responsibilities Commission, the AEA Association of Classroom Teachers, the AEA Board of Directors (District 5), and the Huntsville Education Association Building Representatives and Board of Directors. The work Ms. Garrett has performed on these committees and organizations involves being a liaison between teachers and the Alabama Department of Education; deciding on local and state professional development proposals and offerings; writing curricula and core training scopes and sequences; conducting local, state, and national professional development workshops on technology, strategic teaching, equity literacy, and cultural awareness; being a voice in the discussions of institutional racism, social justice, and equity; and disseminating information to association members.
Ms. Garrett has always been committed to the mission of creating opportunities for students to maintain or get ahead in their educational studies. An example of creating opportunities outside of the classroom is by serving as an instructor for various summer programs. Two of these programs are the Upward Bound Math and Science program (hosted by the North Alabama Center for Educational Excellence) and the Gains in the Education of Mathematics and Science program (sponsored by the Army Educational Outreach Program). The Upward Bound Math and Science program offers educational support to first generation college bound students. Ms. Garrett, for several years, was the primary science instructor for the program. In addition to working with this program, she served as a STEM instructor for the GEMS program on the Redstone Arsenal which focuses on helping students become better collaborators, critical thinkers, and problem solvers. Ms. Garrett has also helped to increase the number of STEM certified educators across the United States by conducting numerous national professional development training sessions as a Project Lead The Way Gateway Master Teacher.
In recognition of her astounding work in the classroom, Ms. Garrett has received numerous honors which include, but are not limited to, being named a Milken National Educator, the Alabama Project Lead the Way Gateway Teacher of the Year, The National Project Lead The Way Gateway Teacher of the Year Runner-up, the Tennessee Valley Air Force Association Teacher of the Year, the Alabama Air Force Association Teacher of the Year, and a two-time NEA Foundation and California Casualty Teaching Excellence Awardee.
At the time of receiving the Milken Educator Award, Garrett was a Science teacher at Edward H. White Middle School (Huntsville, AL) that strived to motivate all students to learn science and reach their academic potential. Using PowerPoint presentations, distance learning video conferences and mock space launch missions, Garrett helped students make exceptional gains in their academic performance. In addition to teaching science and advanced science classes, Garrett was the co-coordinator of an Advanced Science Aerospace Program, chair of the school's science department, a member of numerous committees, including the Teacher Advisory and Leadership Committee, Technology Committee and Curriculum and Instruction Committee. She received additional training through the Alabama Math and Science Technology Initiative (AMSTI), the Alabama Reading Initiative (ARI), and she conducted frequent professional development workshops for her school and school district.
2000 Alabama Agricultural and Mechanical University, B.S.