Top teacher nominations coming due

Time is running out to nominate your favorite teacher for one of the state’s top honors.

Jamie Esler Award
Jamie Esler, Idaho’s 2014 teacher of the year.

School district leaders and charter administrators have until Friday to complete and mail their nominations for the teacher of the year award.

“The teacher of the year program is one of the most prestigious awards a teacher can get here in the state,” State Department of Education spokesman Brady Moore said. “It focuses statewide attention on a teacher who has a real impact on students, somebody making a really big difference.”

According to the national teacher of the year guidelines, educators nominated should:

  • Be exceptionally skilled, dedicated and knowledgeable.
  • Inspire students to learn.
  • Earn the respect of students, parents and co-workers.
  • Play an active role in the community at large and the school.

As part of the award, Idaho’s teacher of the year will:

  • Become Idaho’s nominee for national teacher of the year.
  • Travel the state to meet with fellow educators, legislators, parents and stakeholders about the state of education.
  • Participate in a trip to Washington, D.C., where the state’s top educator will meet every other state’s teacher of the year and meet with the president.
  • Win $1,000 from the state.
Pemberton vertical
Katie Pemberton, 2013 Teacher of the Year.

The state accepts one nomination from each district and charter school. Applications can be downloaded online and should be postmarked by Friday. Completed applications should be mailed to Portia Flynn, Teacher of the Year Coordinator, Idaho State Department of Education, PO Box 83720, Boise, Idaho, 83720-0027.

A review committee will consider each application, and Idaho’s next teacher of the year will be announced and honored in December.

The state’s last three teachers of the year came from Coeur d’Alene. Idaho’s reigning teacher of the year is Lake City High School science teacher Jamie Esler. In 2013, Canfield Middle School’s Katie Pemberton earned the top honor. The year before, it went to Winton Elementary School’s Erin Lenz.