ST. PAUL Natalia Benjamin, a high school English learner and ethnic studies teacher at Century High School in the Rochester school district is the 2021 Minnesota Teacher of the Year.

Benjamin is the 57th recipient of the award, the first from the Rochester district to be named Minnesota Teacher of the Year.

Benjamin has been an EL teacher at Century since 2015. Before that, she had been a substitute teacher and a paraprofessional in the district for two years, and had taught language acquisition and foreign language classes for young learners in Idaho. She has held numerous leadership positions within Century High School and the Rochester district, in her local union and with statewide and national issues for Education Minnesota and the National Education Association.

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She holds a bachelor's degree in molecular biology and a master’s in language acquisition and teaching, both from Brigham Young University in Utah.

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