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Congratulations to our National Board Certified Teachers! Meet Rich Gratien

National Board Certified Teachers
Rich Gratien, Libby Phillips, Solvay Superintendent Jay Tinklepaugh, and the Solvay Board of Education.
Congratulations to Richard Gratien!

Richard (Rich) Gratien was recently named a National Board Certified Teacher. He has been teaching at the Solvay UFSD for ten years. Most of his time at Solvay UFSD has been as a business teacher at Solvay High School, though he did spend three years at Solvay Middle School teaching Family and Consumer Science. Currently, he teaches accounting, business math, business ownership, and sports marketing at SHS. Prior to his time with Solvay, Mr. Gratien worked in business for 25 years before becoming a teacher. 

When asked what is one of his favorite things about coming to work each day, Mr. Gratien was quick to focus on his students. 

“My favorite thing about coming to school each day is working with students,” he said. “The energy that the students bring is what keeps me motivated to teach.”

Mr. Gratien was encouraged to apply to become a National Board Certified Teacher because of his wife, who is also a National Board Certified Teacher in art. He was also encouraged by another Solvay teacher, Maria Fenton, who is involved with National Board. Ms. Fenton encouraged him to apply and supported him throughout the journey. 

“It is much more than applying for certification,” said Mr. Gratien. “The process involves intensive reflection and documentation of my professional practice, gathering evidence of my work, and collaborating with parents and other teachers. The process naturally makes you look at how you teach and to find ways to do more for your students.”

While he was relieved to hear he had received the honor of becoming a National Board Certified Teacher and that his work had met the standards, Mr. Gratien has many plans for the upcoming school year. To start, he plans to lend his time to other teachers who are working toward their certification. 

“I had the support of a number of colleagues while I completed the work,” said Mr. Gratien “I hope that I am able to provide input that will help others reach their goal.”
Mr. Gratien is grateful for the support he has received from the Solvay community and is excited about bringing this award to the district. 

“The faculty at Solvay is excellent,” he said. “I hope that this award will reinforce to the community that we are a district that develops confident, continual learners who are caring community members.”




Solvay Union Free School District
Jay Tinklepaugh, Superintendent
PO Box 980
299 Bury Drive
Syracuse, New York 13209
Phone: (315) 468-1111

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