Kansas City, Mo. – Amidst an unprecedented global health crisis, schools and educators have been tasked with overhauling their procedures and curriculum to ensure students’ safety, while also continuing to provide a high-quality education. As educators rise to the challenge, yet again, the Missouri Charter Public School Association (MCPSA), in partnership with SchoolSmartKC, has honored some of the city’s best educators during the second annual Missouri Charter Schools Excellence in Education Awards.
“With the onset of school closings and distance learning, we’re reminded once again that educators are the unsung heroes in our students’ and families’ lives,” said Douglas Thaman, executive director of MCPSA. “The educators we’re honoring, like many others, have dedicated their lives to the education and betterment of their students, and they deserve to be lauded for their efforts.”
The Excellence in Education Awards came to fruition through a partnership with SchoolSmartKC, MCPSA, and Kansas City Public Schools. The program aims to elevate the teaching profession, increase teacher retention, and attract talent to pursue a career in education.
“SchoolSmartKC’s mission is to eliminate the achievement gap for students in the Kansas City Public School System and an essential part of success in this area is the quality of our educators,” said Angelique Nedved, Director of School Quality for SchoolSmartKC. “By elevating and recognizing their important work accomplished on a daily basis, we want to send the message that educators are the difference maker for students in our city. It’s in partnership with educators that our schools, our families, and our communities are able to grow, develop, and achieve in new areas – especially in these unparalleled times.”
Educators are nominated by their peers for one of five categories, including “Teacher of the Year” and “School Leader”. For each category there are three finalists and ultimately one award winner, which comes with a $10,000 prize. The winners join an elite group of master educators who serve as mentors, and offer best practices and professional development opportunities for other educators. Public school educators from both district and charter schools are eligible to be nominated. MCPSA facilitates the charter school awards ceremony.
The 2020 Excellence in Education Kansas City finalists and award winners are listed below.
2020 Excellence in Education Kansas City Finalists and Award Winners
Elementary Teacher of the Year
★ Vonnchet Clark – Academy of Integrated Arts
Haley Hurst – Academy for Integrated Arts
Ciera Kelley – University Academy
Middle/High Teacher of the Year
★ Angela Rosheim – Kansas City International Academy
Spencer Burke – Frontier Schools
Stacey Hinkle – Crossroads Charter Schools
Staff Member of the Year
★ Bethany Brown – University Academy
John Gresham – University Academy
Michelle Marble – Frontier Schools
Arica Miller – Academy for Integrated Arts
School Leader of the Year
★ Tony Kline – University Academy
Nicole Goodman – Scuola Vita Nuova
Tysie McDowell – Crossroads Charter Schools
Innovative Teams of the Year: $5,000
Teams who have tackled challenges and developed solutions to ensure that children are learning.
★ Behavioral Health Partnership –Academy for Integrated Arts
★ Conflict Resolution Team – Genesis School
CARE Room Team – Kansas City International Academy
PreK Coop. Team – University Academy
About Missouri Charter Public School Association
Missouri Charter Public School Association’s (MCPSA) is recognized and respected as the primary resource and representative voice of Missouri’s charter school sector – comprising over 100 high-quality charter schools. MCPSA’s mission is to improve student achievement by increasing access to high quality charter public education options throughout Missouri. In order to make this happen, MCPSA continuously develops and implements strategic services, resources, and partnerships intended to assist charter schools in providing the best possible public school opportunity to students and families. http://mocharterschools.org.
SchoolSmart KC (SSKC), a local organization dedicated to eliminating the achievement gap, sponsored the awards program for both charter school and district educators. SSKC believes that celebrating excellence through substantial awards provides an investment in current teachers and leaders while also encouraging the best candidates to pursue rewarding careers in education. For more information about SchoolSmartKC, visit the website at: http://.schoolsmartkc.org.