FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 13, 2003
EDUCATORS TO BE HONORED MARCH 22
The State Board of Education will honor 296 of the state’s
outstanding teachers, administrators, support service
personnel and community members for their contributions
to education at the 29th annual Those Who Excel/Illinois
Teacher of the Year awards program.
This year’s recipients will be recognized March
22 at a banquet at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, 3000 S. Dirksen
Parkway, Springfield. The banquet will begin at 6:30 p.m.
and will culminate with the presentation of the 2003-2004
Illinois Teacher of the Year.
The categories for recognition are classroom teacher;
school administrator; student support personnel; education
service personnel; and school board member/community volunteer.
For the third year, teams will also be recognized. A
team is defined as groups of teachers and administrators;
citizens committees; civic organizations; parent organizations;
school boards; booster clubs and others that have had
a significant impact on teaching and learning in a school
“We are honoring these individuals for their outstanding
contributions throughout the state,” said Superintendent
of Education Robert E. Schiller. “They represent
the thousands who help students every day to become successful,
lifelong learners. Their tireless efforts on behalf of
the children of Illinois are helping our students achieve
the highest standards.”
Of the 296 awards, 210 will be presented at the banquet.
Fifty-nine individuals will receive the highest award
level, the Award of Excellence. Sixty-eight honorees will
receive the Award of Merit and eighty-three will receive
the Award of Recognition. The State Board will also honor
86 people with the Certificate of Appreciation, which
will be mailed to the recipients’ schools and presented
The winners’ local schools and communities nominate
award recipients. The nomination includes a brief biography
of the nominee, his or her philosophy of education, professional
development and community involvement and the nominee’s
opinions of the state’s most pressing education
needs. Letters of recommendation are also required.
A committee of peers chooses the award winners. The committee
represents statewide education organizations and includes
former award winners. The committee considers the following
- How the nominee has demonstrated excellence in his
or her duties
- How the nominee has demonstrated concern for children
- Positive effects the nominee has had on the school
- Leadership shown by the nominee to inspire others
- Achievement of the nominee beyond what would be expected
as part of his or her normal duties.
Teacher of the Year finalists comprise all teachers given
the Award of Excellence. Finalists sit for a videotaped
interview that is reviewed by a group of former Teachers
of the Year as part of the selection process. The Teacher
of the Year will serve as the state’s ambassador
for teaching and will represent Illinois in the National
Teacher of the Year program sponsored by Scholastic, Inc.
and the Council of Chief State School Officers.
Robert Grimm, a physics teacher and Science Department
Chair at William Fremd High School, District 211 in Palatine,
is the current Teacher of the Year.
The list of Those Who Excel winners by county is located
on the following website: http://www.isbe.net/news/2003/twe_county2003.pdf.