Before Cox Communications founder James Cox created the media conglomerate we know today and long before he ran for President of the United States in 1920 or was Governor of Ohio, a young James spent the early part of his career as a teacher. It was that time spent in the classroom that inspired him to make education and community outreach a focus in his company. It’s a priority that is still prevalent today as the Cox family carries on his passion for education.
Here in Southern California, Cox Communications has recognized hundreds of educators for their commitment to teaching. The teachers are selected by their districts and in various disciplines.
This year marks the 5th year in Santa Barbara County for the annual event, “Cox Presents: A Salute to Teachers,” a gala-esque evening that will honor eight teachers: the Santa Barbara County Teacher of the Year, three new teachers, three mentor teachers, and the Performing Arts Teacher of the Year.
“These awards bring attention and awareness to the teaching profession and highlight how important it is to support our communities’ educators, especially our new teachers,” said Kirsten McLaughlin, VP, Cox Communications, Santa Barbara. “Supporting education and youth in communities is our number one philanthropic goal.”
The Santa Barbara event is a black-tie optional affair, a chance for teachers to dress up, walk a red carpet and feel extra special for an evening.
“Teachers do so much to celebrate their students and they tend to stay in the background. A Salute to Teachers is our way to celebrate them,” said McLaughlin. This year Salute will be held at the Music Academy of the West on Oct. 28. In Santa Barbara, you can watch the half hour show highlighting the honorees on YurView channel 4 and 1004 starting in late November 2017 through March 2018. (An exact date will be determined at a later time.)
In Orange County, Cox salutes teachers with “Innovation in Education” grants. The program started in 2014. Grants can be as much as $5,000 and are capped at $20,000 per district.
“Education is the key to our future,” said Lacey Gaitan, Community Relations, Cox Communications, Orange County. “As technology advances, we need a workforce that can advance ideas.”
The number of grants awarded varies from year to year. Last year 16 Orange County schools received more than $51,000 in grants to be used in innovative programs for students K-12. Teachers aren’t the only ones invited to submit an application. School administrators and principals can also throw their hats in the ring on behalf of their schools. Projects considered should focus on cyber citizenship, STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art/Design, and Math), or digital literacy. Applications are taken in the fall and grants are awarded at a luncheon the following summer.
Farther south in San Diego County, educators in that community have been honored for 27 years! This year 44 recipients of “Teacher of the Year” were chosen from their districts. “Cox Presents: A Salute to Teachers” will air LIVE at 8 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 16, from the Balboa Theatre in downtown San Diego. Five out of the 44 teachers will be named “County Teachers of the Year.” In San Diego, you can watch the show LIVE on YurView Cox Channel 4 and 1004.
For more information on San Diego Salute to Teachers, please visit www.salutetoteachers.com.