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Hackettstown music teacher honored as Warren County Teacher of the Year

HACKETTSTOWN, NJ (Warren County) – A Hackettstown Middle School music teacher was honored as Warren County Teacher of the Year by the Board of County Commissioners.

Colleen Grzywacz, a vocal music teacher at town’s middle school, was nominated and selected for Warren County Teacher of the Year through the Governor’s Educator of the Year Program, which promotes a positive school culture by acknowledging the hard work and dedication of outstanding teachers.

In presenting her with a proclamation at their September 13 meeting, County Commissioners said they were proud to acknowledge Grzywacz’s excellence as an educator and celebrate her selection as the Warren County Teacher of the Year, extending congratulations to her as the county looks forward to another great year of school.

“I think it’s awesome that our Teacher of the Year this year is a music teacher,” said Commissioner Director Lori Ciesla. “In many schools the arts is where they are cutting back, but it is so important for our kids to be exposed to learning music, getting to decompress from other classes, and having the chance to express themselves.”

Grzywacz earned her bachelor’s degree in music education with a vocal concentration from The College of New Jersey and a master’s degree in school counseling from Kean University. She taught at Eisenhower Intermediate School in Bridgewater for ten years before moving to Hackettstown Middle School where she has been a vocal music teacher the last eight years.

Her primary focus includes teaching choir to fifth through eighth grade students, some of whom have earned accolades on the county, regional, state, eastern, and national levels.

As an educator, Grzywacz enhances her classroom with hands-on instructional strategies for all of her students of varying levels and abilities, and ensures her concerts are interactive, multicultural, and energized performances.

Grzywacz’s enthusiasm for her school extends beyond the classroom as her choirs perform at tree lighting ceremonies, baseball games, and parades. She has also led projects such as talent show fundraisers, a Masked Singer competition, and a faculty lip dub video.

Commissioner James R. Kern III stated that he was “very excited having a proclamation to honor Colleen as Teacher of the Year. There is a lot we hear about going on in the classroom throughout the state of New Jersey and I think it is so important that we celebrate the teachers who are doing a fantastic job educating our children.”

Grzywacz thanked the commissioners for presenting her with the proclamation, and acknowledged her friends, family, fellow teachers, administrators, and students, who came to the meeting to help honor her.

“The group in this room is a testament to the sense of community we have in Warren County: Making connections, working together, and building on the great traditions we have while paving the way for a bright future. It is the utmost honor to represent the hardworking, caring, and creative educators in our county who strive to make a difference in our schools and our students’ lives,” Grzywacz said.

Jay Edwards

Born and raised in Northwest NJ, Jay has a degree in Communications and has had a life-long interest in local radio and various styles of music. Jay has held numerous jobs over the years such as stunt car driver, bartender, voice-over artist, traffic reporter (award winning), NY Yankee maintenance crewmember and peanut farm worker. His hobbies include mountain climbing, snowmobiling, cooking, performing stand-up comedy and he is an avid squirrel watcher. Jay has been a guest on America’s Morning Headquarters,program on The Weather Channel, and was interviewed by Sam Champion.

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