Elaine Hutchison, an Algebra II, trigonometry, pre-calculus and AP calculus teacher at Fairview High School and Chamberlain Middle School in the Fairview School District and at the Oklahoma School of Science and Mathematics Regional Center, was named the 2013 Teacher of the Year by State Superintendent of Public Instruction Janet Barresi during a ceremony Tuesday at the Oklahoma State Fair.
“I am absolutely thrilled to give this title to Ms. Hutchison,” Barresi said. “I have to believe her enthusiasm for preparing students for jobs and the real world outside of high school, and her passion for her subject matter were deciding factors for the judges. I would like to stress, however, that all of our finalists bring unique gifts to the children of our state, and each are worthy of this high honor.”
Hutchison is a National Board Certified Teacher with 19 years of classroom experience. She has been in her current position 10 years. She earned her Bachelors of Science in secondary education from Oklahoma State University.
“A teacher’s enthusiasm ignites greatness! If we want our students to be excited about learning, they must feed on our passion. We must work as though our daily contributions are what make or break our students’ success,” Hutchison wrote in the portfolio that was considered by the Teacher of the Year selection committee.
Committees comprised of teachers, parents and community members selected the 12 finalists – two finalists from each of the six regions in the state. A state committee comprised of education business and civic leaders chose the winner. The state-level competition included individual and group interviews, a written portfolio, and personal videos showcasing each finalist’s teaching strategies.
Hutchison will represent Oklahoma in the national Teacher of the Year competition in the spring of 2013, sponsored by the Council of Chief State School Officers and the ING Foundation.
She also received about $50,000 in cash and prizes from numerous contributors, including $5,000 from the Masonic Fraternity of Oklahoma; the use of a Ford vehicle for a year from the John Vance Auto Group, in coordination with the Oklahoma State Fair; products, software and professional development from SMART Technologies; a laptop computer from Oklahoma Schools Insurance Group; $1,000, a $2,500 tuition credit and a $500 credit toward a classroom makeover, and a Greg Burns print from American Fidelity Assurance Company; numerous scholarships and tuition waivers from many of the state’s universities; among many others.
Hutchison will serve as Oklahoma's "Ambassador of Teaching,” presenting to teachers and civic groups throughout the state for one year.
Each finalist received prizes including a $1,000 award from Masonic Fraternity of Oklahoma; two tickets and in-game recognition to an Oklahoma City Thunder game, a $100
gift card and other gifts from American Fidelity Assurance Company, in conjunction with the Oklahoma City Thunder; software and professional development from SMART Technologies; as well as gifts from the Oklahoma State Fair, the Oklahoma Education Association and Professional Oklahoma Educators.
The Teacher of the Year Ceremony is presented by the state Department of Education, its long- time partners the State Fair of Oklahoma and Masonic Fraternity of Oklahoma, American Fidelity Assurance Company as well as a long list of contributors.