Winfield, Oxford Educators Honored Saturday In Wichita

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Two area teachers were honored for being regional semifinalists for Kansas Teacher of the Year.

Elizabeth Wall, a 1st-grade teacher at Irving, and Lauren Van Allen, an agriculture teacher at Oxford Junior-Senior High School, were honored during an awards ceremony Saturday in Wichita.

According to the Kansas State Department of Education, 124 educators across the state were nominated for the Kansas Teacher of the Year distinction this year.

Melissa Haney, a science teacher at Explorer Elementary School in Goddard, and Joanna Farmer, an agriculture teacher at Southeast High School in Wichita, were named Region 4 finalists.

Other semifinalists were Brooke McGown, a kindergarten teacher at Circle Benton Elementary School, and Sarah Koehn, a theater and speech teacher at Andover High School.

Each semifinalist received a red marble apple with a wooden base, compliments of The Master Teacher in Manhattan.

Nominations are made in each of the four regions in the state.

The Kansas State Department of Education, sponsor of the Kansas Teacher of the Year program, appoints regional selection panels comprised of teachers, education administrators and higher education representatives to select semifinalists and finalists from each region.

Each panel selects six semifinalists – three elementary teachers and three secondary teachers. From those semifinalists, the panel in each region then selects one elementary finalist and one secondary finalist. The Kansas Teacher of the Year is selected from among the state’s eight regional finalists.

The mission of the Kansas Teacher of the Year program is to build and utilize a network of exemplary teachers who are leaders in the improvement of schools, student performance and the teaching profession.

The Kansas Teacher of the Year team, comprised of the Teacher of the Year and state finalists, serves as an ambassador for education in Kansas, making public appearances across the state promoting education and the teaching profession.

The individual selected as the Kansas Teacher of the Year is eligible for national distinction as National Teacher of the Year.

The National Teacher of the Year program is a project of the Council of Chief State School Officers in partnership with the Voya Foundation.

Winfield’s Tabatha Rosproy, a Pre-K teacher, won the state Teacher of the Year in 2019 and was named the national Teacher of the Year in 2020.

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