RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - Two "Super Teachers" from Chesterfield and Henrico were rewarded for their super-ness in special ceremonies Monday.
Timothy Couillard, a teacher at James River High School in Midlothian, received his award in a surprise ceremony Monday in front of students, faculty and special guests. The award, co-sponsored by the Virginia Lottery, the Virginia PTA and Virginia-based The Supply Room Companies, amounts to a $2,000 cash prize plus an additional $2,000 credit for classroom supplies at The Supply Room.
This is the seventh year for the Virginia Lottery Super Teacher awards, which honor outstanding K-12 public school educators. Each year, the Lottery asks for nominations from all across the state and, this year, nearly 800 were received.
"While attending a TEDxSummit in Doha, Qatar in 2012, Tim interacted with his classes via Skype to share his daily experiences," said student's parent and nominator Kimberly O'Hare-Griffith. "Tim consistently takes action in pursuing his idea of experiences outside the classroom that expand the way our students see the world. He inspires passion and creativity in his students."
Robert Peck, a teacher at Douglas Freeman High School in Henrico, also received his award in a surprise ceremony Monday.
"Mr. Peck's teaching style resembles the Socratic Method," said student and nominator Natalia Bell. "While most educators follow uniform, chapter-by-chapter instruction from textbook guides, Mr. Peck designs his lessons so that they challenge students' personal perspectives and encourage civil debate."
The 2014 Virginia Lottery Super Teachers were selected by a panel of distinguished educators and community leaders, including:
- Dr. Jo Lynne DeMary, former State Superintendent for Public Instruction
- Dr. Martha Ross, professor emerita, JMU
- The Honorable James W. Dyke, former Virginia Secretary of Education
- Brenda Sheridan, President of the Virginia PTA
- John Bennett, 2013 Super Teacher Award Recipient, Mary Munford Elementary School
The judges selected the eight winners based on the strength of the nominations and educators' qualities as exemplified by the nominator. Each nomination included answers to four questions addressing everything from the teacher's passion for and commitment to the profession, to innovation and creativity in the classroom, to how they involve the parents of their students.