2017-18 Teacher-of-the-Year

2017-18 Teacher-of-the-Year
Posted on 08/07/2017
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Monday, August 7, 2017

School district announces five finalists
for 2017-18 Teacher of the Year honor

BEAUFORT – Five classroom teachers were named today as finalists for Beaufort County’s 2017-2018 District Teacher of the Year.

The finalists are Duncan Aspinwall-Winter, a IB History teacher at Hilton Head Island High School; Angela Bellantone, a literacy coach at Bluffton Middle School; Jennifer Friend-Kerr, a third-grade teacher at Hilton Head Island School for the Creative Arts; Meredith Rhoden, an engineering teacher at Beaufort Elementary School; and Dr. Nancy Ungvarsky, a biology teacher at Beaufort High School.

Superintendent Jeff Moss announced the five selections before an audience of hundreds of educators at the opening session of Summer Institute 2017, the district’s annual three-day summer professional development conference.  This year’s conference is being held at May River High School.

“Great teaching is the No. 1 ingredient in an excellent education, and today we announced five top-notch professionals who epitomize great teaching,” said Superintendent Jeff Moss.  “Our finalists are terrific representatives for all of our district’s teachers.”

The District Teacher of the Year will be announced Sept. 22 at an awards breakfast.

Becoming District Teacher of the Year is a three-step process that began when school-level teachers of the year were selected in April.  Those wishing to compete for District Teacher of the Year submitted detailed applications in June.

In the second step, a selection committee consisting of parents, former educators and community leaders from across Beaufort County reviewed the applications and rated them using a numerical scoring system.  The five highest-scoring applicants were named today as finalists. 

In the next step, the five finalists will be interviewed by a separate review committee again composed of judges from across the county.  The judges will begin by reviewing a video of each teacher doing a classroom lesson.  The judges will then score candidates based on how well they respond to questions about their teaching methods as shown in the video, as well as how they respond to questions about current education issues.  After those interviews, the panel will select a District Teacher of the Year to represent Beaufort County’s classroom professionals.

The current Teacher of the Year is Hilton Head Island High School teacher Beth McMurray.