Ann Arbor teacher named semi-finalist in race for National Music Educator Award


ANN ARBOR – Yael Rothfeld, longtime music teacher at Thurston Elementary School, has been named a semi-finalist in the 2022 GRAMMY Museum and Recording Academy Music Educator Award race.

After being named a quarter-finalist in July, Rothfeld was selected as a semi-finalist from a pool of 25 teachers from 16 states. The GRAMMY Museum and the Recording Academy narrowed their selection after receiving more than 1,135 nominations for educators in 49 states.

Rothfeld, the only educator from Michigan to advance to the semifinals, said she was “a little shocked” when she learned she had been named quarter-finalist earlier this summer.

“I have been truly honored and, especially after this difficult year with COVID, I feel like it was a great recognition that all the hard work I do is seen,” she told A4 in July.

According to a press release, the Music Educator Award “recognizes current educators who have made significant and lasting contributions to the field of music education and demonstrate a commitment to the larger cause of sustaining music education in schools.” .

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A recipient is chosen from 10 finalists each year. The first prize is a $ 10,000 honorarium and a matching grant for the music program of the winner’s school. In addition, the remaining nine finalists each receive honoraria and matching grants valued at $ 1,000, and the remaining 15 semi-finalists receive honoraria with matching academic grants valued at $ 500.

Ford Motor Company Fund, the education champion of the GRAMMY Museum, funds the matching grants each year.

The 2022 Music Educator Award finalists will be announced in December. For more information visit

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