Mr. Rizzuto Named NYS PE 'Teacher of the Year'
Oyster Bay High School health and physical education teacher Mr. Charles Rizzuto is wildly passionate about his profession, and it shows. He was recently named 2020 Secondary Physical Education Teacher of the Year by the New York State Association of Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (NYS AHPERD). The highly competitive award recognizes teaching excellence and overall performance in the disciplines of physical education at the elementary, middle, and high school levels, adapted physical education and health education at the middle and high school levels, and dance education.
“It is a huge honor and very humbling to receive this award,” Mr. Rizzuto said. “I am so appreciative of the people who nominated me, and the committee that selected me, but the truth is, watching students take risks, overcome barriers, grow, and learn skills that will enhance their overall health and quality of life for the rest of their lives are the real rewards.”
A leader in his field, Mr. Rizzuto has been recognized a few times in recent years for his talents and skills in both physical education and health. He was the 2016 recipient of the Nassau Zone Secondary Teacher of the Year, the 2017 New York State Health Education Amazing Person of the Year and received the Drug Free Hero Award in 2019.
He is President of the Nassau Zone of NYS AHPERD, is a Future Professionals Representative of Nassau Zone, and a SHAPE America Health Education Council Member. He is a yearly presenter at the Nassau Zone and NYS AHPERD conferences and has presented at other state and national forums, such as at the National Physical Education and School Sport Institute, and has been invited to present at the international level.
Mr. Rizzuto is the creator, producer, contributor and host of the Health and Physical Education (HPE) Quick Tips Podcast where he shares tips for health and physical education teachers in every episode. He has his own teacher resource website RizzutoEducation.com, has been featured on the Physedagogy Podcast, and regularly shares ideas on Twitter. Published eight times, he was a contributing author for “Lesson Planning in High School Physical Education,” published by Human Kinetics. He co-authored the new, New York State Learning Standards for Physical Education (2020) and co-authored the New York State COVID-19 Re-Entry guidance document for Health and Physical Education.
An educator at Oyster Bay High School for 13 years, Mr. Rizzuto teaches physical education for grades 7-12, health education for grades 9-12 and exercise science for juniors and seniors. In addition to teaching at Oyster Bay High School, he is an adjunct instructor at Adelphi University where he teaches a course he created five years ago called “Technology in Health and Physical Education.” The course teaches students how to use technology for assessment and instruction in health and physical education.
“Mr. Rizzuto is well respected by his colleagues, provides great motivation to the students in Oyster Bay and continually brings and energy and passion to the department through a variety of innovative ideas,” Mr. Kevin Trentowski, the District’s Director of Athletics, Physical Education and Health, said in his letter of recommendation. “His incredible teaching and professionalism are the result of his tremendous commitment to excellence, tireless work ethic and outstanding character.”