2007 Teacher of the Year Finalists Selected - August 31, 2006

Record Number: 2597
Displayed from: Aug 31, 2006 , until: Sep 15, 2006

The following was released by the Indiana Department of Education on Aug. 31. Dr. Suellen Reed, Superintendent of Public Instruction, today announced 10 finalists for Indiana's 2007 Teacher of the Year program, which recognizes outstanding teachers from the state's 293 public school corporations and state-accredited nonpublic schools. The Teacher of the Year Program is a great way to show our appreciation for our hard-working and dedicated teachers, Dr. Reed said. We are proud that one of these 10 individuals will be representing the best and the brightest in Indiana. The Teacher of the Year program is open to all licensed classroom teachers who intend to remain active in the teaching field. Nominations for the program are requested each year from all local school superintendents and accredited nonpublic school officials. School officials are asked to nominate one teacher by submitting a portfolio in which the teacher's exceptional qualities and accomplishments are described by students and former students, colleagues and supervisors, and friends from their communities. Local school superintendents nominated 47 public and nonpublic educators as the 2007 Indiana Teacher of the Year. All nominees will be honored November 1, 2006, at the Hilton Indianapolis North at a dinner hosted by the Indiana Department of Education and the program's corporate sponsors -- Indiana Farm Bureau, Inc., the Farm Bureau Insurance Companies, and Scholastic Inc. The 10 finalists were selected based on criteria that include a concern for students, the ability to inspire learning, and an ability and willingness to work cooperatively with colleagues. Each of the finalists will be interviewed on Tuesday, September 5, by a Department of Education committee, comprised of department personnel, and external community and education leaders - including former teachers of the year. The winner, which will be announced in mid-to-late September, will represent Indiana at the national Teacher of the Year competition in Washington, D.C., in the spring and receive prizes including a $1,000 from Indiana Farm Bureau, Inc., a portfolio from Farm Bureau, Inc., and Farm Bureau Insurance, Sabbatical/Higher Education Scholarship Opportunities, a framed certificate and an Indiana Teacher of the Year pin and ring. The National Teacher of the Year Program, presented by the ING Foundation, is a project of the Council of Chief State School Officers and sponsored by Scholastic Inc.


State finalists are: Sharon Amrhein Grade 1 - Literacy Coordinator Frazee Elementary School Fayette County School Corporation Mia McCreary, principal Dr. Tala Clay, superintendent BS - Indiana University MS- Indiana University Matthew Derby Grades 9-12 - Physics, Math, Drama New Haven High School East Allen County Schools Eva Merkel, principal Dr. M. Kay Novotny, superintendent BS - Eastern Michigan University MA - Ball State University Tina M. Greene Grades K-5 - English as a New Language Teacher Central Elementary School MSD of Pike Township Patricia Burton, principal Nathaniel Jones, superintendent BA - Washington State University Heather Hart Grades 9-12 - Mathematics Center Grove High School Center Grove School Corporation Matt Shockley, principal Dr. Candace Milhon-Baer, superintendent BS - Indiana University MA - Indiana Wesleyan University Gail R. Messmore Grade 2 Wilson Elementary School Greater Clark County Schools Becky Kischnick, principal Dr. Thomas Rohr, superintendent BA - Indiana University Southeast MA - Indiana University Southeast Todd Roberts Grade 6-8 - TV Broadcasting Northwood Middle School Fort Wayne Community Schools Matthew Schiebel, principal Dr. Wendy Robinson, superintendent BA/BS - Saint Joseph College Dixie Robinson Grades 9-12 - English FIND Center Alternative School Program Richmond Community Schools Cheryl Amos, principal Dr. Allen Bourff, superintendent BA - Georgetown College (Georgetown, Kentucky) MAE - Ball State University Marla Sellers Grade 2 Franklin Elementary School Logansport Community School Corporation Hayley LaDow, principal Dr. Damon Peigh, interim superintendent BA - Indiana University - Kokomo MA - Indiana University - Kokomo Anna Shults Grade 3 Fall Creek Elementary School Hamilton Southeastern Schools Jerril Staley, principal Dr. Concetta Raimondi, superintendent BA - Anderson University MA Indiana Wesleyan University Shelly L. Sparrow Grade 3 Fred J. Hums Elementary School School City of Mishawaka Judith Welling, principal R. Steven Mills, superintendent BS - Ball State University

With nearly 30,000 students, Fort Wayne Community Schools is one of the largest school districts in Indiana. FWCS proudly allows families to choose any of its 50 schools through its successful school-choice program creating diversity in each school, including some with more than 75 languages spoken. FWCS offers seven magnet schools focusing on areas such as science and math, communication, fine arts or Montessori at the elementary and middle school level. In high school, students can choose from the prestigious International Baccalaureate program, Project Lead the Way or New Tech Academy as well as other rigorous academic and specialty training programs.