Kansas Teacher of the Year Delegation Presents to ESU Students

January 31, 2017

Emporia State students will learn from experts when the 2017 Kansas Teacher of the Year team visits campus on Thursday, Feb. 2.

The eight teachers include two ESU alumni — Jason Sickel, vocal music teacher at Blue Valley North High School in Overland Park, who was named 2017 Kansas Teacher of the Year; and Maret Schrader, language arts teacher at Seaman High School in Topeka, who was named a 2017 Kansas Regional Teacher of the Year. 

The other six regional teachers of the year are:

  • Kristine A. Bruce, fourth-grade teacher at Auburn Elementary School;
  • Jennifer M. Farr, fifth-grade teacher at Lincoln Elementary School in Junction City;
  • Jonathan Ferrell, sixth-grade science teacher at Briarwood Elementary School in Overland Park;
  • Crystal May, fourth-grade mathematics, science and social studies teacher at Pray-Woodman Elementary School in Maize;
  • Lori J. Stratton, English and reading teacher at Wamego High School; and
  • Brent M. Wolf, sixth-grade English language arts teacher at Derby North Middle School.

The Kansas Teacher of the Year program, sponsored by the Kansas State Department of Education, identifies, recognizes and utilizes representatives of excellent teaching in the elementary and secondary classrooms of the state. Throughout their award year, the Kansas Teacher of the Year and state finalists serve as ambassadors for education in Kansas by making public appearances across the state.

As Kansas Teacher of the Year, Sickel also will represent Kansas in the National Teacher of the Year competition.

During their day at Emporia State, the team will present “It’s Showtime” to three groups of students and faculty and tour the National Teacher Hall of Fame. 

“The presentation is interactive and based on the teachers sharing their experiences in the classroom,” said Joan Brewer, assistant dean of The Teachers College. “It’s really motivating and inspiring for young, pre-service teachers.”

The teachers also will be honored at a reception with Phi Delta Kappa and Patterson Scholars.

“The reception at the end of the day includes a roundtable discussion,” Brewer said. “It’s an opportunity for ESU students to really sit and visit with these teachers, get advice from them and learn from their experiences.”




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