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Ohio Department of Education Announces Regional Teachers of the Year and Statewide Finalists


The Ohio Department of Education today announced the 11 teachers who are designated as the “2021 Teacher of the Year” for their respective State Board of Education district through the Teacher of the Year Program. Of the group of 11, the following four teachers were selected as state finalists to be considered for recognition as Ohio’s Teacher of the Year for 2021:

  • Joy McKarns, Northmont City Schools - District 3
  • Anthony Coy-Gonzalez, Ohio School for the Deaf – District 6
  • Sandy Thomaschek, Canal Winchester – District 9
  • Tom Jenkins, Grenon Local – District 10

“The devotion and commitment of Ohio’s teachers has never been more evident than it was this past school year," State Superintendent of Public Instruction Paolo DeMaria said. "Their professionalism and heart for their students has always been evident to me, but even I have been blown away by the tremendous effort our teachers put forth during this pandemic to make sure Ohio’s students were safe, cared for and successful throughout the abrupt transition we all experienced. I am so proud to honor and recognize these incredible teachers today for being shining examples of the very best of this amazing group of professionals.”

“I’m so proud of our teachers and all the work they’ve done to keep Ohio’s students safe while continuing their education throughout this pandemic,” said Ohio State Board of Education President Laura Kohler. “The amazing teachers we are recognizing today are examples of the hard work and dedication that teachers across the state have exhibited and I’m delighted to be able to shine a spotlight on them through the Teacher of the Year program.”

School administrators, fellow educators, parents, students and community members nominated teachers for the district awards. A State Board of Education member representing each district or volunteer staff from area Educational Service Centers worked with local committees of educators, and often parents and business leaders, to select the district’s awardee.

An Ohio panel of education and community stakeholders will interview the four state finalists from the State Board district awardees to select the Ohio Teacher of the Year. The state superintendent will announce the statewide honoree this fall.

The Ohio Teacher of the Year will represent the state in the National Teacher of the Year selection in spring 2021, sponsored by the Council of Chief State School Officers.