SALEM — To close out Teacher Appreciation Week, Emmanuel “Manny” Brito got to take the field in a pregame ceremony at Fenway Park — with his family and colleagues cheering him on — as this year’s Most Valuable Educator.
On Saturday, May 7, Brito, who teaches social studies at Collins Middle School in Salem, was honored ahead of the Boston Red Sox game against the Chicago White Sox. The recognition is a community program run by the Red Sox in which students and/or parents and colleagues nominate an outstanding educator.
Brito was nominated by the New England regional director for the nonprofit Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship, which provides entrepreneurship education to middle and high school students from under-resourced communities like Salem.
Brito began his work with NFTE in 2020, serving over 150 seventh- and eighth-graders with the organization’s entrepreneurial courses at Collins Middle School. He continued with the program through the pandemic and led NFTE’s first ever Virtual Summer Entrepreneurship Incubator for students in the Boston area.
This past year, Brito worked with Collins principal Matthew Condon to launch a schoolwide NFTE partnership in the form of a three-year entrepreneurship enrichment pathway for all 600-plus students at Collins.
“Mr. Brito is a true partner and relational teacher, earning the trust and respect from his learners — walking alongside them on their educational path, laughing with them, challenging them, and ultimately building a relationship in which they can come to him for not only academic questions but social and emotional support as well,” reads a statement from NFTE accompanying a video from the ceremony.