Arizona Education Association

Winter 2020

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WINTER 2020 | ADVOCATE 11 Ben Collinsworth Pre-K Literacy and STEM Emily Meschter Early Learning Center Flowing Wells Unified School District Nate Rios 11th & 12th Grade U.S. Government & History Flowing Wells High School Flowing Wells Unified School District Sheila Rowe 6th Grade English Language Arts Coyote Ridge Elementary School Glendale Elementary School District Taryn Tidwell Middle School Choir, Musical Theatre, and Drama Shepherd Junior High Mesa Public Schools. Native American Educator Named as Arizona Teacher of the Year O n October 24, 2019, Lynette Stant, a 3rd grade teacher at Salt River Elementary in the Salt River Schools district was named as the Arizona Educational Foundation's (AEF) 2020 Arizona Teacher of the Year. She is the first Native American woman and Bureau of Indian Education school teacher to be named an Arizona Teacher of the Year. The Arizona Education Association (AEA) is a proud sponsor of the AEF Arizona Teacher of the Year program. Stant was selected from the five 2020 Ambassadors for Excellence that were identified by AEF last year. 2019 Arizona Teacher of the Year and AEA member, Kareem Neal, presented Stant with the award. He spoke about being a proud AEA member during his remarks at the awards luncheon, which was attended by more than 600 Arizona educators, elected officials, and business leaders. Stant is a fifteen-year veteran elementary teacher who teaches in the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community. She holds a master's degree in Education from Grand Canyon University and graduated Summa Cum Laude with a bachelor's degree in Elementary Education from Arizona State University. Stant is a Gates Millennium Scholar and part of the GMS Alumni community. In addition to leading her grade-level team, she mentors new teachers and serves as a cooperating teacher for future educators. Stant was selected to present at the 2018 100K in10 Teacher Forum to address the STEM teacher shortage. Stant intends to spend her "year of service" as an Arizona Teacher of the Year advocating for equity in schools. "Every student, no matter their background or learning ability, deserves an equitable education. Not just those that come to school prepared with a backpack and a pencil box full of writing utensils," says Stant. "We must dedicate ourselves to the kids who need us the most, the ones with no backpacks but who have eyes filled with belief that education will change the course of their lives." As Arizona's Teacher of the Year, Stant becomes a candidate for National Teacher of the Year. She will receive $15,000 from the AEF, a trip to the White House to meet the U.S. President, and will spend a week at International Space Camp in Huntsville, Ala. She will also be given professional speech training, consideration to receive an honorary doctorate from Northern Arizona University, and an Arizona K12 Center Scholarship to pursue National Board Certification. She also participated in the Fiesta Bowl Parade. The following four finalists were named 2020 Ambassadors for Excellence:

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