New Bedford, Massachusetts
“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel” – Maya Angelou
English & Research
Takeru Nagayoshi is the 2020 Massachusetts Teacher of the Year. A sixth-year educator, he teaches AP English in New Bedford, MA. After piloting the research-based AP Capstone program, Takeru helped his district lead the state in the number of AP Certificates awarded with over 92 percent of his students passing their exams.
As a son of Japanese immigrants and a gay person of color, Takeru leverages his identities to fight for education equity. Outside the classroom, he has written op-eds on education issues, coaches developing teachers, and lends his voice to multiple panels, committees, and an educator diversity task force. He has also participated in several fellowships, including those offered by Teach Plus, Harvard, and the MA Department of Education. An advocate for community-based solutions, he launched his own educator leadership program, SNEALI, which develops local capacity for New England teachers.
Takeru has received recognitions such as the Sue Lehmann Excellence in Teacher Leadership Award (2019), Boston University Young Alumni Award (2019), and Sontag Prize in Urban Education (2018). He graduated magna cum laude from Brown University with an honors B.A. in international relations and from Boston University an M.Ed in Curriculum and Teaching.