Finalists for the Oklahoma Teacher of the Year contest were announced Wednesday morning.
Local school districts select their best teachers, and the state Education Department administers the statewide contest. A statewide committee will interview the finalists and select a winner, who will be named in September during the Oklahoma State Fair.
The winner receives a hefty payout. Last year, winner Elaine Hutchison, of Fairview, received about $50,000 in prizes, including use of a car for the year and a weeklong trip to Space Camp.
The finalists are:
James Griffith Intermediate School
Third-grade and reading specialist
Nine years experience
“My job is to empower students who feel powerless. I get to make the world better, one student at a time.”
Charles Page High School
World history and religion
20 years experience
“Regardless of the activity, my primary objective is to shine light on others and make each individual feel valued. I am convinced that my mission is to touch lives and to empower my students to realize their significance.”
Porter High School
Eight years experience
“It takes a fine balance in the classroom to meet all the mandates of the job while also meeting every student's needs. It is my choice to make a positive impact on students' lives, as well as meet the needs of every learner.”
Noble High School
Algebra II and calculus
21 years experience
“A good teacher will happen upon the profession in many ways, but will always be identified by a profound passion for students and student opportunities to learn.”