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Edmond teacher of the year sees career as mission

Edmond School District’s Teacher of the Year, Elanna Killackey, fought hard for her own education, rising at 4:30 a.m. to travel to a private school.
By Steve Gust, For The Oklahoman Published: April 22, 2014

Being named teacher of the year out of a district of almost l,500 teachers is an honor that left Edmond Memorial High School freshman English instructor Elanna Killackey in awe.

The distinction was given to her at the Edmond Public Schools Foundation banquet this month at Oak Tree Country Club.

“I'm still a bit in shock,” she said a week later. “All the teachers, including the finalists, are so deserving.”

She took another bow last week at the Edmond School Board meeting along with the other site teachers of the year.

She’s been honored by people including Edmond Schools Superintendent David Goin.

“Elanna Killackey demonstrates passion, professionalism and purpose in her teaching,” he said. “Her devotion to her students is uncompromised.”

Killackey said teaching is a calling she sensed at a young age.

“For me, this doesn’t seem like work,” said the teacher, who graduated from the University of Central Oklahoma in 2002.

Her mission is to get students to think for themselves.

“She lets us come up with the answers on our own and creates a great environment for learning,” said Hannah Beck, one of Killackey’s students.

Education is a vital mission, Killackey said. She proved it in her own life, she said. Her mother, Delilah Sanderson, wanted a private education for her daughter, but the logistics of doing that while living in Okarche proved to be a challenge.

Before she got her driver’s license, there was a routine. She woke up at 4:30 a.m., took a bus to Mercy in northwest Oklahoma City, then another bus to the central Oklahoma City area, then walked nearly a mile to Grace Christian Academy.

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