2017 ACTE New Teacher of the Year
Nelson County High School
“Mr. Ball stands out among his peers for a variety of
reasons,” says Shelly Hendricks, Principal at Nelson County High School (NCHS)
in Bardstown, Kentucky. During his
three years as an agriculture teacher at NCHS, Jacob Ball has made numerous
investments in professional development, technology, and equipment to improve
learning opportunities for his students. At a time when proving the value of CTE
programs is crucial, Ball has become dual certified in Agriculture and Biology
to offer students the option to take an agribiology course that allows students
to receive biology credit within the agriculture program. Ball has also become
certified to teach Curriculum for Agricultural Science Education (CASE), which is
rooted in inquiry-based and science curriculum and has greatly increased the
science rigor in his courses. He has applied for and received over $10,000 in
various grants to purchase Google Chromebooks for the Agriculture Program, making
his classroom the only full “one to one” technology classroom in the school. Ball
puts in extra time serving as an advisor for the Nelson County FFA, leading the
chapter to receive a Gold Rating every year at the state level and a National
Three Star Chapter Rating in 2014.
Outside of the classroom, Ball is committed to
improving NCHS as a whole. He takes an active role in Professional Learning
Communities (PLCs) to help improve educational practices and is a leader on the
Program Review Committee at NCHS. Ball has streamlined the intensive, year-long
process of gathering evidence across the school for program review by
developing a school-wide sharing system through google docs, saving time and
simplifying the process for fellow educators. Ball is active in Kentucky
Association of Agricultural Educators, Kentucky ACTE and Kentucky Farm Bureau.
Learn more about the 2017 ACTE Excellence Award winners.
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