CNR Alumna One of Five Finalists for Top Teacher Award on 'Live with Kelly & Michael'


A New Rochelle teacher who received her bachelor's and master's degrees from The College of New Rochelle is one of five finalists in the 4th Annual Top Teacher Search on "Live with Kelly & Michael."

Ann Marie Rooney, a special needs teacher at Ward Elementary School, was nominated by Timothy Bavosa, the father of Timothy, a 7-year-old with autism.

"Timothy entered Mrs. Rooney's class last school year with emotional and behavioral problems which are not easy traits for anyone to handle let alone a teacher with other special needs children in the course of trying to stick to a curriculum in a classroom," said Bavosa in his letter of nomination.

"However, to see our son come home from his first day with Mrs. Rooney and tell us: 'I love school and Mrs. Rooney is awesome!' was something that literally brought my wife and me to tears."

Bavosa also shared a poem Timothy and the family had written:

You taught me with your love and heart
That I could always be a part
Of something bigger
Now you know
That people like me can grow and grow!

The five finalists, selected out of 12 by online voting, will be filmed in their classrooms and appear on the show. Learn more about the teachers and their nominating letters at