The Maine Department of Education is accepting nominations for the 2014 Maine Teacher of the Year through Feb. 1, 2013. Anyone — parents, students, fellow teachers, administrators — can nominate a teacher for this special recognition.
The Teacher of the Year Program does not attempt to single out any individual as the best teacher in Maine, but rather to honor one teacher who represents all the excellent teachers in our state. Selecting a Teacher of the Year is an exceptional way to celebrate the many outstanding and dedicated professionals teaching in Maine schools.
The 2014 Teacher of the Year will automatically become part of the National Teacher of the Year Program. This includes an annual conference in Scottsdale, Arizona, in January 2014, a National Teacher Forum in Washington, D.C., in April 2014, “Space Camp” at NASA’s Alabama headquarters in July 2014, and a national education conference in Princeton, N.J., in September 2014. All semi-finalists who complete the process will be honored at a banquet in fall 2013.
While it is a local decision how to nominate a teacher from a unit or school, the use of a local nominating committee of at least three colleagues of the nominee is encouraged. This committee might also include a parent, school board member, student and/or other members of the school community.
To be considered for nomination, a teacher must hold at least a four-year degree and be employed by a Maine public school, including a public charter school; or be employed by a publicly-supported secondary school (a private school that enrolls 60 percent or more publicly funded students, sometimes referred to as “the academies” or “the Big 11”).
For detailed information about the selection criteria and nomination process, a downloadable nomination form, guidelines, and an example of a school unit process that incorporates Teacher of the Year nominations into its annual teacher recognition activities, visit: www.maine.gov/doe/toy.
- Jennifer Pooler