Five teachers were named Monday as finalists for the Beaufort County School District’s 2018-19 Teacher of the Year.
The finalists include Brittany Carter, a science teacher at Bluffton High School; Tamekia Ford, a sixth-grade English teacher at Whale Branch Middle School; Cora Lugo, a literacy teacher at Hilton Head Island School for the Creative Arts; Kelly Hall, a theater arts teacher at Beaufort Middle School; and Karen McKenzie, an eighth-grade social studies teacher at H.E. McCracken Middle School.
Interim superintendent Herb Berg announced the finalists in front of more than 1,000 educators at the opening session of the 2018 Summer Institute, the district’s annual three-day summer professional development conference at Bluffton High School, according to a district news release.
The district’s choice for Teacher of the Year will be announced at an awards ceremony in September after the culmination a three-step selection process, the release said.
Those who wanted to compete for the title submitted applications in July.
Then, a selection committee — consisting of parents, former educators and community leaders in Beaufort County — reviewed the applications rated each applicant using a numerical scoring system, according to the news release.
The five highest-scoring applicants were then named as finalists.
During the last step of the process, the finalists will be interviewed by a separate review committee of judges from across the county.
The judges will review a video of each finalist teaching a classroom lesson and score them based on how well they respond to questions about their teaching methods and current education issues, the release said.
The Teacher of the Year will receive a $1,000 grant from the Foundation for Educational Excellence and a $2,000 stipend from the school district. The other four finalists will receive $500 stipends, according to district spokesperson Jim Foster.
The 2017-2018 Teacher of the Year is Beaufort High School biology teacher Nancy Ungvarsky.