We've all had that special teacher who encouraged us to do something great or pushed us to accomplish more than we ever thought we could. Inspired by our documentary TEACH, and in an effort to award teachers whose efforts often are overlooked, in April we launched the Teacher Stories program, in which we asked you to tell us about your favorite teachers. In return, in Round 1 of the contest, we donated $11,000 to seven schools through DonorsChoose.org. For Round 2, with the help of DIRECTV, we’re giving $14,000 to 10 schools and free DIRECTV service for one year to five math teachers who won in the Math Award category.
Over the past five months we've received more than 850 moving, inspiring, humorous, thoughtful submissions. We’re honored to announce the winners of Round 2.
The envelope, please!
Holiday Park School in Holiday Park, Ariz., will be awarded the grand prize of $5,000. Its students submitted a total of 38 stories about their teachers.
The following schools will be awarded $1,000 each. The first five are the winners of the Math Award category. We voted based on originality, persuasiveness, creativity, and relevance.
- Whitney High School—Cerritos, Calif. Student: Proud Heng; teacher: Sandra Bruesch
- Sheridan Japanese School—Sheridan, Ore. Student: Tabitha Mueller; teacher: Elizabeth Delacy
- Schimelpfenig Middle School—Plano, Tex. Student: Rahul Sharma Nemmani; teacher: Christopher Mutke
- Upland High School—Upland, Calif. Student: Alexis Tumball; teacher: Joe Darrow
- Penny Road Elementary—Cary, N.C. Students: Debbie Williams and Irene Butler; teacher: Joan Colalillo
- Green Hope High—Cary, N.C. Student: Colleen McIndoe; teacher: Jennifer Nation
- Patrick Henry High School—Roanoke, Va. Student: Cathy Davis; teacher: Fred Fuller
- Paul Laurence Dunbar High School—Lexington, Ky. Student: Katelin Kelly; teacher: Gary Egan
- La Sierra High School—Riverside, Calif. Student: Megan Trombly; teacher: Briony Campbell
Winner Briony Campbell, a special education math teacher at La Sierra High School in Riverside, Calif., traveled to New York last year just to pick up test materials for a student with a disability who had missed the cutoff date. Student Megan Trombly submitted Campbell’s story after watching TEACH on Pivot TV, TakePart’s sister network. “Her incredible act changed the mood of the school,” said Assistant Principal Getty J. George. “We were going through a rough patch, and that helped the students and teachers to end the school year on a great note.”
This article was created as part of the social action campaign for the documentary TEACH, produced by TakePart’s parent company, Participant Media, in partnership with Bill and Melinda Gates.