Ellyn M. Kerr

Title: New York City Department of Education
Company: Special Education Teacher, Grant Writer
Location: Brooklyn, New York, United States

Ellyn M. Kerr, special education teacher and grant writer for the New York City Department of Education, has been recognized by Marquis Who’s Who Top Educators for dedication, achievements, and leadership in special education.

For more than 30 years, Ms. Kerr has been a special education teacher for the New York City Department of Education, where she specializes in working with children with behavioral disorders. As the parent of two children with special needs, Ms. Kerr understood on a personal level the impact that appropriate accommodations and empathetic teachers can have on student outcomes. She credits the inspiration and encouragement she received from mentor and colleague Dr. Charles Hedberg with allowing her to make the move from parent to teacher. Ms. Kerr holds an Associates’s degree from Kingsborough Community College and a Bachelor of Arts from the City University of New York and was awarded a Master of Science in special education for children with emotional and behavioral disorders by Hunter College in 2001.

Early in her career, Ms. Kerr spent a year at Covenant House New York as a research associate to Dr. Barbara Feitel, a groundbreaking clinical psychologist best known for her work on trauma in youth with behavioral and substance use disorders, an opportunity that she considers the highlight of her career. Since 2003, she has also served as a sustainability coordinator for the New York City Department of Education, adding grant writing and a broad range of administrative and planning duties to her responsibilities. Ms. Kerr has had numerous grants successfully funded, resulting in enhanced programming and resources for the district’s special education programs, and she hopes to further specialize in grant writing in the future. She is a former volunteer for the Common Sense Organization and Penny Harvest and hopes to transition into animal-assisted therapy programs and work with animal organizations as she approaches her retirement from teaching.

Ms. Kerr is a member of the National Association for Special Education Teachers, and Kappa Delta Pi, the International Honor Society in Education, who presented her with a 2001 award and a 2015 Service and Learning Award in recognition of her work.


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