MEDIA RELEASE: Maine’s 2022 County Teachers of the Year Announced

Governor Janet Mills, Education Commissioner Pender Makin, Education Leaders Honored the Teachers at the State Capitol

Augusta, ME—Sixteen Maine teachers were announced as 2022 County Teachers of the Year today at a ceremony in the Hall of Flags at the Maine State Capitol Building. Governor Janet Mills joined Education Commissioner Pender Makin, Educate Maine Executive Director Jason Judd, State Board of Education Chair Fern Desjardins, 2022 Maine Teacher of the Year Kelsey Stoyanova, and Maine County and State Teachers of the Year Association Co-President Shana Goodall to announce the new class of County Teachers of the Year.

As part of the Maine Teacher of the Year Program, hundreds of teachers across Maine are nominated by a member of their school community. Through a rigorous application process, one teacher from each county is selected as a County Teacher of the Year by a panel of teachers, principals, and business community members within the county.

“It is a privilege to congratulate Maine’s 2022 County Teachers of the Year,” said Governor Janet Mills. “As the daughter of a long-time public school teacher, I know how hard each of these teachers works every day to make sure our kids have the best shot at success. I am so grateful for all they do for our students, our communities, and our state, and I promise that my Administration will do all we can to support them.”

“It’s such an honor to celebrate these extraordinary teachers and elevate them as true ambassadors for all Maine teachers and the teaching profession,” said Education Commissioner Pender Makin. “These teachers were nominated by students, colleagues, and parents for the difference they make every day in the lives of their students, for their innovation and leadership, and for their commitment to their schools and communities. You are all true heroes, and the Maine Department of Education is so grateful for all you do.”

“We are so proud of the 2022 County Teacher of the Year cohort. They are truly remarkable teachers and we look forward to working with them throughout their year of recognition,” said Educate Maine Executive Director Jason Judd.

2022 County Teachers of the Year:

Maine County Teachers of the Year serve as ambassadors for teachers, students, and quality education state-wide throughout the year. The Maine County Teachers of the Year are available to make presentations to local and regional organizations. Throughout the summer, they will continue to participate in an intensive Maine State Teacher of the Year selection process.

The Maine Department of Education’s Teacher of the Year Program is administered through a collaborative partnership with Educate Maine. To learn more about the Teacher of the Year Program visit: https://www.mainetoy.org/. The event was also broadcast live on the Maine Department of Education’s YouTube page.

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There is Still Time to Nominate Maine’s Teacher of the Year! 

Help Honor and Elevate Maine Teachers by nominating them for County and State Teacher of the Year – nominations close on February 4th!

The Maine Department of Education and Educate Maine would like to thank members of the public who have taken the opportunity to elevate an educator through the nomination of Maine’s Teacher of the Year.  There is still time to nominate educators who demonstrate a commitment to excellence and who inspire the achievement of all students. Nominations remain open for the 2022 County Teachers of the Year and 2023 Teacher of the Year through 5:00pm on Feb. 4, 2022.  

Nominations can be made through a nomination form on the Maine Teacher of the Year Website.  Nominations will be accepted from students, parents, caregivers, community members, school administrators, colleagues, college faculty members, and associations/organizations (self-nominations, and nominations from family members are not accepted). 

To be considered for the County and Maine Teacher of the Year award, a person must: 

  • Be employed by a Maine public school including PK-12, Career and Technical Education sites and centers, and/or Adult Education Programs 
  • Hold the appropriate professional certification for their position 
  • Be actively teaching students at least 50% of full-time at the time of nomination and during the year of recognition 
  • Have been teaching for a minimum of five years – three of which are in Maine
  • Remain teaching in the County for which they are selected during year of recognition 

Maine’s County and State Teachers of the Year serve as advocates for teachers, students, and public education in Maine. They serve as advisors to the Department of Education and state-level education stakeholders across Maine.  Additionally, County and State Teachers of the Year join a cohort of teacher leaders that actively work together for the betterment of education in Maine. They also receive on-going professional learning and participate in many state and county leadership opportunities. 

The 2022 County Teachers of the Year will be announced in May. The 2023 Maine Teacher of the Year will be selected from the 16 county honorees. The field will be narrowed to eight semi-finalists, and then three state finalists before the Maine Teacher of the Year is announced by Maine’s Education Commissioner at a school assembly in the fall. Each year, State and County Teachers of the Year are honored at the annual Teacher of the Year Gala also held in the fall. 

On behalf of, and in partnership with Maine Department of Education, the Maine Teacher of the Year program is administered by Educate Maine, a business-led organization whose mission is to champion college, career readiness, and increased education attainment. Funding is provided by Bangor Savings Bank, Dead River Co., Geiger, Hannaford, the Maine Lottery, the Silvernail Family, and Unum, with support from the State Board of Education and the Maine State Teacher of the Year Association. 

The Maine Teacher of the Year program is committed to a nomination and selection process that ensures people of all backgrounds are represented.  Educate Maine and the Maine Department of Education champion that commitment by encouraging the nomination of educators from all culturally diverse experiences and backgrounds. 

For more information about the Maine Teacher of the Year program, visit the Maine Teacher of the Year website.  

Integrating Podcasting at Caribou Community School 

Creation and innovation are core elements to middle school learning, thanks to Kim Barnes and Heather Anderson, who both teach 8th grade English language arts (ELA) and social studies at Caribou Community School. In a recent unit of study about resiliency, Mrs. Barnes and Mrs. Anderson had the creative idea that podcasting would be a great way for students to demonstrate their knowledge on the topic. 

Mrs. Barnes said the idea was conceptualized from the work she did with the revised ELA Standards and thought that podcasting was a truly “authentic way to braid [the] standards into the work [they] were already doing.” 

Though they knew they wanted to use podcasting in their unit, Mrs. Barnes and Mrs. Anderson also felt they needed some support with teaching their students the more technical aspects. They reached out to the Department of Education’s Maine Learning Technology Initiative (MLTI) Ambassadors who were able to create and present lessons to the Caribou 8th grade students. This all-day event focused on supporting the work Mrs. Barnes and Mrs. Anderson were doing in the classroom, as well as leading the students through the process of podcasting on their Chromebooks. The Ambassadors explained the value and possibilities of podcasting and then demonstrated how to create and edit podcasts using WeVideo. Students then practiced the process of podcasting in pairs or small groups by choosing a topic of their own, or just discussing a predetermined prompt. One group took the opportunity to begin a sports podcast, where they discussed recent events in sports and even planned out how often they should record the podcast in order to continue with it. 

From this experience, Mrs. Barnes noticed that the engagement of the students skyrocketed. Students reported that they really enjoyed the creative part of making podcasts and, immediately, many of them began listening to other podcasts outside of class for fun. Some students were also motivated to begin a school podcast.  

The busy day proved to be quite fruitful. Mrs. Anderson and Mrs. Barnes felt that the event not only helped the students, but it also really energized them, as teachers. One student shared that the work with podcasting “is changing [his] perspective about reading and writing to a more positive one as ELA has always been a struggle for [him].” 

This story was written and coordinated by MLTI Ambassador Rob Dominick as part of the Maine Schools Sharing the Success Campaign. To learn more, or to submit a story or an idea for a story, email rachel.paling@maine.gov. 

MEDIA RELEASE: Maine’s Teacher of the Year Journey Starts with Your Nomination

Help Honor and Elevate Maine Teachers. Nominations Now Open for County and State Teacher of the Year Program

MAINE – Nominations are now open for the 2022 County Teachers of the Year and 2023 Teacher of the Year. Members of the public are encouraged to nominate educators who demonstrate a commitment to excellence and who inspire the achievement of all students.

“Our educators have continued to inspire, educate and care for their students during dynamic and difficult times,” said Commissioner of Education Pender Makin. “We encourage education colleagues, students, and community members to nominate an educator who exemplifies the committed heroes in our classrooms and schools.”

Nominations can be made through a nomination form on the Maine Teacher of the Year Website now through 5:00 pm on Feb. 4, 2022. Nominations will be accepted from students, parents, caregivers, community members, school administrators, colleagues, college faculty members, and associations/organizations (self-nominations, and nominations from family members are not accepted).

To be considered for the County and Maine Teacher of the Year award, a person must:

Maine’s County and State Teachers of the Year serve as advocates for teachers, students, and public education in Maine. They serve as advisors to the Department of Education and state-level education stakeholders across Maine.  Additionally, County and State Teachers of the Year join a cohort of teacher leaders that actively work together for the betterment of education in Maine. They also receive on-going professional learning and participate in many state and county leadership opportunities.

The 2022 County Teachers of the Year will be announced in May. The 2023 Maine Teacher of the Year will be selected from the 16 county honorees. The field will be narrowed to eight semi-finalists, and then three state finalists before the Maine Teacher of the Year is announced by Maine’s Education Commissioner at a school assembly in the fall. Each year, State and County Teachers of the Year are honored at the annual Teacher of the Year Gala also held in the fall.

MEDIA TOOLKIT
Help us promote the Teacher of the Year Program! Our goal is to expand and diversify our nomination pool!

About the Program:

Graphics:

Video Testimonials:

On behalf of, and in partnership with Maine Department of Education, the Maine Teacher of the Year program is administered by Educate Maine, a business-led organization whose mission is to champion college, career readiness, and increased education attainment. Funding is provided by Bangor Savings Bank, Dead River Co., Geiger, Hannaford, the Maine Lottery, the Silvernail Family, and Unum, with support from the State Board of Education and the Maine State Teacher of the Year Association.

The Maine Teacher of the Year program is committed to a nomination and selection process that ensures people of all backgrounds are represented.  Educate Maine and the Maine Department of Education champion that commitment by encouraging the nomination of educators from all culturally diverse experiences and backgrounds.

“We are proud to administer the Maine Teacher of the Year program in collaboration with the Maine Department of Education,” said Dr. Jason Judd, Educate Maine Executive Director. “Our unique program is a partnership between business and education designed to honor the good work of teachers, elevate the profession, provide professional growth opportunities and amplify the voice of classroom teachers.  The network of State and County Teachers of the Year is a valuable resource for our state and we often call upon their expertise to guide and inform our work.”

“We are grateful for our partnership with Educate Maine and for their commitment to a program that elevates the voice and role of Maine educators,” said Commissioner Makin. “We are also grateful for our sponsors and the network of Maine’s County and State Teachers of the Year for their ongoing advocacy and leadership.”

Through the generous support of Maine businesses, there is no cost to the local district when the Teacher of the Year is out of the classroom on their official duties, which includes representing educators state-wide and nationally through safely distanced in-person and virtual events that highlight the important work of Maine schools, communities, and educators.

For more information about the Maine Teacher of the Year program, visit the Maine Teacher of the Year website.

Media Contact: Dolly Sullivan, Educate Maine at dolly@educatemaine.org

 

Educators Honored at Outdoor Teacher of the Year Tailgate Gala

(Pictured: 2021 County Teachers of the Year)

The Maine Teacher of the Year Program hosted an outdoor celebration last month to honor its 2021 Maine County Teachers of the Year and the 2022 Maine Teacher of the Year. This is the second year that the program has hosted the event with an outdoor afternoon celebration in lieu of a traditional indoor evening gala in an effort to gather attendees safely.

Meet the County Teachers of the Year:

Hosted in Lewiston outdoor at Geiger, a longtime supporter of the Maine Teacher of the Year Program, the celebration featured lunch provided by Lewiston Regional Technical Center’s Green Ladle Food Truck, an awards ceremony, and remarks from partners, supporters, and 2022 Maine Teacher of the Year Kelsey Stoyanova.

Event attendees included the 2021 Maine County Teachers of the Year and Maine’s 2022 Teacher of the Year Kelsey Stoyanova, who were each accompanied by friends and family members. Also in attendance were representatives from the Maine Department of Education, including deputy Commissioner Dan Chuhta who offered remarks, representatives from the Maine County and State Teacher of the Year Association (MCSTOYA), legacy County and State Teachers of the Year, and members of the Maine State Board of Education.

Secretary of State Shenna Bellows was also an honorary guest, carrying on the annual tradition of graciously presenting Maine’s signature license plate to the 2022 Teacher of the Year, Kelsey Stoyanova.

The event was made possible by the impeccable planning of Educate Maine, the Maine County and State Teacher of the Year Association (MCSTOYA), and the Maine Department of Education.

The Teacher of the Year Program is generously sponsored by: Bangor Savings Bank, Dead River, Geiger, Hannaford, the Maine State Lottery, Unum, and the Silvernail Family. For more information about the Maine Teacher of the Year program, visit: https://www.mainetoy.org/