2019 National Teacher of the Year
Rodney Robinson is a 19-year teaching veteran. Rodney became a teacher to honor his mother, who struggled to receive an education after being denied as a child due to segregation and poverty in rural Virginia. In 2015, Robinson started teaching at Virgie Binford Education Center, a school inside the Richmond Juvenile Detention Center, in an effort to better understand the school-to-prison pipeline.
Robinson has been published three times by Yale University and has received numerous awards for his accomplishments. He is a member of Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney’s Education Compact Team, which includes politicians, educators, business leaders and community leaders and is working with the city and local colleges to recruit underrepresented teachers. He also worked with Pulitzer Prize-winning author James Forman Jr. on developing curriculum on race, class and punishment as part of the Yale Teacher's Institute.