Jennifer Corroy Porras
11th-12th Grade English, IDEA College Preparatory Donna, TX
Jennifer Corroy grew up and attended school in Wisconsin but has made her career for nearly a decade deep in the Rio Grande Valley of Texas, pushing her students to meet the challenge of college ever since. She began her teaching career as a 2004 Teach For America Corps Member and has taught for the past three years at IDEA College Preparatory in Donna, Texas.
Jennifer has played a crucial role in furthering IDEA’s mission to raise student achievement, developing an intense and rigorous English curriculum to prepare her students for success on the literary assessment of the International Baccalaureate (IB) program. Since her first year teaching IB English, 80 percent of her students have scored high enough on the exam to earn a college credit for the course, a 43 percent gain from the previous year. All of them have passed the Exit Level Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) for English Language Arts.
Jennifer’s love of literature is infectious. She describes her instructional process as “demystifying academic writing,” as she shows students how to interpret literature, from understanding an author’s intention to seeing multiple meanings in the same piece of work. She is also a spirited advocate for professionalization in teaching. "I'm proud to say I’m a teacher,” Jennifer says. “I could be doing a lot of things, and I choose to teach."
In addition to the Fishman Prize, Jennifer recently received the 2013 Teach For America Alumni Award for Excellence in Teaching.