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Virginia Journal of Education

McGlothlin Award for Excellence

Washington County Education Association member Liz Phillips, a seventh-grade English teacher at Wallace Middle School, has won a 2011 McGlothlin Award for Teaching Excellence. The award comes with a $25,000 check, $10,000 of which must be used for international travel. Phillips put that portion of the funds to good use, traveling to England over the summer to create new lesson plans and a website to share them with other educators.

Among the McGlothlin finalists were Lisa James, a member of the Giles Education Association, and Lisa Walden of the Washington County Education Association. They each received $1,000.
Only teachers from portions of southwestern Virginia and surrounding areas of Tennessee, West Virginia and Kentucky are eligible for the McGlothlin Awards, which are sponsored by the McGlothlin Foundation, Blue Ridge PBS and Radford University’s College of Education and Human Development.

Portsmouth Education Association members swept that city’s 2011 teaching honors. Tom Shenk, a physical education teacher at John Tyler Elementary School, is the city’s Teacher of the Year. Jeff Pennington of Churchland Primary and Intermediate School is the elementary Teacher of the Year; Niki Johnson-Thrash of Cradock Middle School is the middle school Teacher of the Year; and Diane J. Brame of Woodrow Wilson High School is the high school Teacher of the Year.

 The Tazewell Education Association had similar success, as members Sheree Black, John Crist and Sandra Shortridge earned teaching honors. Black was named elementary school Teacher of the Year; Crist won the honor at the middle school level; and Shortridge was chosen as high school Teacher of the Year.

 Shauna Mayo, a member of the Petersburg Education Association and a fifth grade teacher at Robert E. Less Elementary School, is the city’s Teacher of the Year.


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