DeBastiani IRSD Teacher of the Year

James DeBastiani of Southern Delaware School of the Arts has been selected as the Indian River School District’s Teacher of the Year for 2005-2006.

The announcement was made at the district’s annual Teacher of the Year banquet on April 21 at Sussex Pines Country Club in Georgetown.

DeBastiani was chosen as the district’s overall winner from a pool of 14 candidates, one from each school.

DeBastiani has been a drama teacher at Southern Delaware School of the Arts since 1998. Prior to joining the SDSA staff, he worked as a residential manager and assistant program director at the Stockley Center in Georgetown and as a secondary-level English teacher for the Delaware Adolescent Program Inc. He also spent three years as an English teacher at Sussex Central Middle School and has pursued various private business interests.

DeBastiani has extensive involvement in community theater programs. He is a founding member of the Possum Point Players in Georgetown, serving as a board member, play director, technical consultant, actor and youth coordinator. He has also volunteered his services with the Second Street Players in Milford.

Teacher of the Year winners from the individual schools were as follows:

Teacher School

Joanne Gichner Lord Baltimore Elementary School

Susan Deery Phillip C. Showell Elementary School

Lori Kelly Frankford Elementary School

Michelle Peeling Indian River High School

Jesse Steele Selbyville Middle School

As the district’s Teacher of the Year, DeBastiani is now eligible for the state Teacher of the Year Award, which will be announced in October.