About the Charter Oak Children's Book Award





Jane E. Martellino, a school media specialist, moved to Connecticut in 2007.  Having spent three years employed in Hillsborough County Schools, Tampa Florida, Jane participated in both the Sunshine State Book Awards (equivalent to our Nutmeg) and also the FRA (Florida Reading Association) Young Children's Book Awards.  Arriving in Connecticut, Jane learned that CT did not offer a K-3 book award program. So she waited. And waited. And in her fifth year of teaching in the New Fairfield School District, the golden opportunity surfaced. Mrs. Linda Norris, parent and PTO Book Fair Chairwoman, asked Jane what project she would love to see funded if the book fair funds could be designated for a special project.  This was the moment THE CHARTER OAK CHILDREN'S BOOK AWARD was born!   Jane served for ten years as the chairperson for the COCBA program.  At the end of the 2020-2021 school year, Jane retired from teaching in the Connecticut Public Schools, leaving COCBA as a legacy to her career in CT education. 


The 2023-2024 school year marks the 13th year for the COCBA program.  Each year, an increased number of students from the state of Connecticut participate in the program.  If your school has not enrolled in this year's program, please sign-up today.  Visit the "Timeline" page for important dates and utilize the "Resources" page for activities and extensions.  

In 2014, a COCBA Committee was formed and continues to be responsible for choosing the nominated titles, locating and creating extension activities, and helping to coordinate partnerships with participating schools.  Publishers may submit titles in final or galley copy for review by contacting, Christina O'Neill (email: coneill114@gmail.com).