Tuscarora Indian School Principal Elizabeth Corieri has been named the Educator of the Year by Niagara University.
Corieri has served as principal at the Tuscarora Indian School for 18 years. She was nominated by former Niagara-Wheatfield Central School District Superintendent Lynn Fusco and the committee at Niagara University chose her for the honor.
"I am so overwhelmed and just honored," Corieri said. "I love my job. My favorite part of my day is just seeing the kids get off of the bus in the morning. I greet everyone with a smile and everyone is just thrilled to come to school. They have a lot of enthusiasm and that is what I love about the elementary level. I love being in the classrooms and seeing all the work that the students do. I like talking to them about their dreams and their goals. It's fun and interesting and I try to follow them though middle school and high school.
"I work very closely with Jamie Gilbert, our Native American coordinator. We get the sixth-graders to attend the dances at Edward Town Middle School and it gets them very excited about going to seventh grade there. We also take the students on college tours when they are in high school, so they can focus on their career goals. This is very important to me."
Corieri started her career at Niagara-Wheatfield in 1987, teaching at Military Road Elementary School. When that school closed, she went to Colonial Village and taught kindergarten and second grade before she transferred to the Tuscarora School in 1993.
"I found it to be a unique, culturally rich school. I wanted to learn more about the language and culture," Corieri said.
She taught first grade and fifth grade before being made interim principal and became principal in 1998.