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Tampa Teacher Named One of Nationís Most Innovative Education Leaders

Mechelle De Craene, a special education and gifted education teacher at James Buchanan Middle School in Hillsborough County, was recently honored with the Cableís Leaders in Learning Award for creating and implementing innovative ways to educate students and for making a substantial contribution to learning.

An initiative created and administered by Cable in the Classroom, the cable industry's education foundation, Cable's Leaders in Learning Awards recognize highly inventive classroom educators, administrators, community leaders, and policymakers who are transforming education from kindergarten through high school (K-12).

As one of four winners nationwide in the General Excellence category, De Craene is being recognized for developing Very Special Techies, a project that encourages media literacy through multimodal learning opportunities for students with special needs. In addition to using media to aid in class instruction, De Craene started a class blog, which serves as a virtual peer support group for her special needs students, who are all considered at-risk.