Maryland Teacher of the Year to be named Friday
The 2009 Maryland Teacher of the Year will be named Friday night during an awards gala at Martin's West in Baltimore. The celebration recognizes the teaching profession and the 24 local teachers of the year, according to the Maryland State Department of Education.
Finalists for this year's award are: John Billingslea, Franklin High School, Baltimore County; Mary Catherine Stephens, Mount Airy Elementary School, Carroll County; Sharon Thomas, Elkton High School, Cecil County; William Thomas, Dr. Henry A. Wise, Jr. High School, Prince George’s County; Sharon Richards, Marion Sarah Peyton School, Somerset County; Julie Harp, Easton Middle School, Talbot County; Debra Wilkins, North Salisbury Elementary School, Wicomico County; and Amy Gallagher, Stephen Decatur Middle School, Worcester County. The finalists were picked from the original group of 24 teachers representing each school system.
Guests at the banquet will include Lt. Governor Anthony Brown, State Superintendent Nancy Grasmick, Rep. John Sarbanes, and former U.S. Sen. Paul S. Sarbanes. The event runs from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. The Teacher of the Year will be named at approximately 9:15 p.m. The winner moves on to the National Teacher of the Year competition.
The state teacher of the year is chosen by an 11-member committee comprised of union leaders, administrators, retired teachers and past winners. Applicants go through a lengthy process that includes a written application and an oral interview. Teachers are evaluated on their passion for the profession, their accomplishments and their ability to discuss education-related issues.
UPDATE: Congratulations to the winner, William Thomas of Dr. Henry A. Wise, Jr. High School in Prince George’s County.