Gulf Coast Educators FCU’s 2021 Appreciated Teacher of the Year!

Mr. Akash Patel- Dallas ISD

This year we received 1,300 nominations from over 167 different school districts across the state of Texas. Among all the nominations Mr. Patel’s made it to the top five, ultimately winning him the title of GCEFCU’s Appreciated Teacher of the Year, with a total of 1,187 votes!

Mr. Patel is the Spanish/World Languages/LPAC Chair at Ignite Middle School. He was selected by our committee for his distinguished accomplishments. He is a well-traveled Spanish teacher that has visited over 50 Countries and speaks a total of five languages, very impressive! As an educator that teaches at a Title 1 ACE, 100% low socioeconomic middle school, he works with students that come from challenging backgrounds and most have never traveled outside of the country. However, through his travel and life experiences, Mr. Patel has been able to enhance his teaching methods and provide valuable content for his students when designing his lesson plans.

In his first year as a teacher, he was recognized by the State Department of Education and the Multicultural Education Institute as the January 2015 Educator of the Month and the 2015 Multicultural Teacher of the Year. This recognition was earned by Mr. Patel for his achievement in promoting global citizenship and accomplishing a successful academic turnaround. Not only this but he was also inducted in the International Literacy Association’s 30 Under 30 list and was previously selected as one of the World’s Top 50 Teachers and shortlisted as a finalist for the $1 million Global Teacher Prize. Additionally, last June, Mr. Patel was elected to serve the 2020-2022 term on the National Council of the United Nations Association of the United States of America (UNA-USA).

Mr. Patel’s passion to be able to connect his classrooms with people and professionals worldwide is evident in his accomplishments. What started off through social media and virtual platforms later transformed Mr. Patel to become the founder of Happy World Foundation, a Texas-based global education non-profit. This organization promotes global citizenship education, citizen-to-citizen diplomacy, and cross-cultural understanding in schools and communities worldwide.

Mr. Patel strives to be an exceptional teacher and serves as a mentor to both his students and colleagues. He speaks at regional, national, and international conferences on his classroom experience, and has also trained over 40K educators to use the Global Connect database and other multicultural programs. Thanks to Mr. Patel’s accomplishment and through Happy World Foundation’s global education programs, thousands of American children travel to countries worldwide. Please help us in congratulating Mr. Patel for this outstanding achievement and going above and beyond what is required in the classroom to provide these resources for his students.