Dear Colleagues,

My name is Tom Michalek and I truly appreciate this opportunity to welcome our members to the 83rd  year of the New York Council for the Social Studies! 

It has been quite a journey the past 28 years of teaching in my efforts to help guide future leaders and  create objective citizens for our future.   My involvement with professional organizations such as  NYSCSS has only enhanced my leadership skills and kinship to my fellow educators. Being involved as President of Capitol District Council, committee chair, and now President of the New York State Council has provided a great resource for growth.  Through committee work, professional development, historical walking tours, and new teacher recruitment, these council stewardships have been a rewarding experience. The goal is always to bring our colleagues together to listen, share and have fun with history/social studies. 

As I look back on what we have accomplished so far with our Annual Conference and Summer Institute, NYSCSS is stronger than ever in providing high quality, professional development experiences for Social Studies educators. Our past president, Laura Mecca-Retzclaff, our  Board of Directors have demonstrated great leadership in laying the groundwork for our future success.  

In the coming year, I look forward to building more relationships with our colleagues across the state by attending local council events, webinars as well as represent our members at the National Council for the Social Studies Conference this year.  If you have not been to an NCSS convention, I would highly encourage the opportunity. It provides a more broad perspective of our profession and has great resources that we will bring back to our state convention next Spring.  

With these resources, It is my hope that we can continue to increase attendance at our professional development events and provide exceptional Continuing Teacher Leader Education (CTLE) credits for certified educators of New York.  The professional relationships we have established with the New York State Education Department will continue to move forward as the new Regents exams in Global and U. S. History continue their roll out over the next few years.

Collaboration is key to successful classroom practices and NYSCSS continues to encourage our members to consider taking a more active role with us. There are many opportunities to be a part of a committee and/or take on a leadership role. Our organization is only as strong as our members who volunteer their time and talents.  Please consider sharing your service to NYSCSS!

Please contact me with ideas and/or questions throughout this upcoming school year.   It is my honor and privilege to serve you as your president for the 2020-2021 term.  

Thank you for all that you do for your profession and/or students.

Thomas Michalek


New York State Council for the Social Studies


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