Or so she thought.
Instead, she was surprised to learn she had received the an Empire State Excellence in Teaching award through Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s office. Cuomo’s representative in the Mohawk Valley office, Delores Caruso, attended to present Elacqua with a plaque and an oversized check for $5,000.
Elacqua, one of five teachers in the region to be honored, has been teaching at Waterville for four years. She has been a teacher for 10 years. Her husband Joseph, who was in on the surprise, snuck into the meeting right before the announcement, prompting his wife to ask, What is going on?
Elacqua, who grew up in Utica, said she considers herself a scientist who teaches and brings that attitude into her classroom. “I’m excited about what I do,’’ she said. “If you have no passing for what you are learning, then there is no learning. I want students to understand I am just as excited about what they are doing as they should be.’’
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