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DESE Announces 2021 Missouri Regional Teachers of the Year

The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) announced the 2021 Missouri Regional Teachers of the Year this week, with the 34 selected teachers now under consideration to be named the 2021 Missouri Teacher of the Year. Committees comprised of education peers and key stakeholders from each Regional Professional Development Center (RPDC) in Missouri selected the 2021 Regional Teachers of the Year, listed below by RPDC area.

Agency for Teaching, Leading and Learning

  • Jesse Baker, Billings R-IV – mathematics, Billings High School
  • Tonya Claybrook, Spokane R-VII – Grade 5, Highlandville Elementary
  • Armando Johnson, Springfield R-XII – Spanish, Central High School

Central RPDC

  • Joseph Koeberl, Lawson R-XIV – American history/current events, Lawson Middle School
  • Lindsey Tinney, Cole Camp R-I – special education, Cole Camp High School

Education Plus/St. Louis RPDC

  • Dione Anderson, Francis Howell R-III – reading, Harvest Ridge Elementary
  • Cheryl Kay Calcaterra, Hancock Place – reading, Hancock Place Elementary
  • Darrion Cockrell, Lindbergh Schools – physical education, Crestwood Elementary
  • Joel Crenshaw, Hazelwood – English, Northwest Middle School
  • Cathy Farrar, Rockwood R-VI – science, Marquette High School
  • Erin Graves, Dunklin R-V – science, Herculaneum High School
  • Clarence Hines, Special School District – criminal justice, North Technical High School
  • Tricia Ottens, Valley Park – library science, Valley Park Middle/High School
  • Jefferson Stephens, Mehlville R-IX – English language arts, Bernard Middle School
  • Nathan Williams, Bayless – science, Bayless Junior High School

Heart of Missouri RPDC

  • Jacob Baker, Jefferson City – science, Thomas Jefferson Middle School
  • Paula Vail, Winfield R-IV – science, Winfield High School
  • Sarah Elizabeth Worth, Warren Co. R-III – special education, Rebecca Boone Elementary

Kansas City RPDC

  • Ashlyn Brantley, Platte Co. R-III – physical education, Platte County High School
  • Mike Chrostowski, Raytown C-2 – culinary arts, Herndon Career Center
  • Summer Kelley, Liberty 53 – project-based learning, Liberty Academy
  • Matthew Ketteman, Lee’s Summit R-VII – music, Longview Farm Elementary
  • Kyle Plummer, Blue Springs R-IV – social studies, Blue Springs South High School
  • Michelle Preslar, Fort Osage R-I – agriculture, Fort Osage Career & Technology Center

Northeast RPDC

  • Jennifer Gill, Shelby Co. R-IV – Grade 4, Shelbina Elementary
  • Amy Rendel, Hannibal 60 – English college prep, Hannibal High School

Northwest RPDC

  • Corinne Russell, St. Joseph – French, Central High School
  • Rebecca Wynne, Maryville R-II – STEM, Maryville Middle School

South Central RPDC

  • Linda Beckett, Sullivan – physical education, Sullivan Middle School
  • Jacob Flora, Lonedell R-XIV – STEAM, Lonedell Elementary

Southeast RPDC

  • Cassandra Mills, Fredericktown R-1 – science, Kelly A. Burlison Middle School
  • Melissa Thomas, Cape Girardeau 63 – Grade 2, Jefferson Elementary

Southwest Center for Educational Excellence

  • Allison Pittman, Joplin Schools – mathematics, South Middle School
  • Amy Redus, Marionville R-IX – kindergarten, Marionville Elementary

The Regional Teacher of the Year program began in 2016, in an effort to celebrate outstanding teachers from all areas of the state. Semifinalists and finalists for the 2021 Missouri Teacher of the Year award will be selected in August, with the 2021 Missouri Teacher of the Year being named in early September.

Misty Grandel, an English language arts teacher from Fordland High School (Fordland R-III), is the current Missouri Teacher of the Year.

DESE conducts the Missouri Teacher of the Year program with financial support provided by Bayer AG.