LITTLE ROCK, AR (KAIT) - Three Northeast Arkansas teachers have been named regional finalists for the 2017 Arkansas Teacher of the Year, state education officials announced Wednesday.
The teachers - Adriane Duke, an 8th and 9th grade math teacher at Annie Camp Junior High; Jennifer Andrews, a 4th grade math and science teacher at Walnut Ridge Elementary and Cherilyn Minnis, a 12th grade English teacher at the Academies of West Memphis - were among 14 finalists named for the state award.
Gov. Asa Hutchinson and Arkansas Department of Education Commissioner Johnny Key will recognize the regional finalists at 1:30 p.m. Sept. 28 in the Old Supreme Court room at the Capitol. During the ceremony, the four state semi-finalists will be announced.
"Effective, dynamic teachers are the foundation of a quality education," Key said. "As we work to transform Arkansas to lead the nation in student-focused education, we must recognize teachers who have demonstrated their commitment to educational excellence and celebrate their accomplishments. I am extremely proud of these finalists and for the example they set for all current and future educators."
The Arkansas Teacher of the Year program, which is part of the National Teacher of the Year program, recognizes teachers who demonstrate strong teaching and leadership skills. The regional finalists will receive a $1,000 award, with the Arkansas Teacher of the Year receiving an additional $14,000. The awards are made possible by a grant provided by the Walton Family Foundation, a long-time supporter of the program.
After the four state semi-finalists are announced at the ceremony Sept. 28, the selection committee will conduct site visits. During the visits, the committee will observe the teacher in the classroom and interview the teacher and school administrators. A surprise notification announcing the 2017 Arkansas Teacher of the Year will be held later this fall.
In addition to the recognition ceremony Sept. 28, a reception for the regional finalists will be held in Room 207 at the Capitol immediately following the ceremony. Several State Board of Education members plan to attend the events, but no official business will be conducted.
To learn more about the ATOY program, go to http://www.arkansased.org/divisions/communications/teacher-of-the-year.
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