Congratulations to another amazing educator here in Iowa!

According to a recent press release from the Iowa Department of Education, the 2022 Iowa Teacher of the Year recipient has been revealed! This year's winner is Sara Russell, a teacher at Pleasant Valley High School in Bettendorf.

Sara is 43-year-old and has been an educator for 19 years now. She is currently teaching social studies here in Eastern Iowa. Sara said in a statement:

“I believe in the idea that you will never truly understand a concept or idea until you can apply it to your own life or the world around you. While direct instruction is a necessary component of learning, I structure as much of my class time as possible around student activities that demand students to make their own meaning of concepts or ideas, usually in a cooperative environment. With all of the activities, I strive to have students discuss, defend, explain and apply their learning.”

Other finalists for the 2022 Teacher of the Year include Dawn Arnold from Benton Community High School, Kelli Kovarik from North Fayette Valley High School, Elaine Menke from Lakewood Elementary, and Staci Mercado from Central DeWitt High School.

The last Iowa Teacher of the Year was George Anderson, who also teaches here in Eastern Iowa! He's a history teacher, assistant football coach, and serves on the leadership team at Kennedy High School in Cedar Rapids. He also served our country as a United States Marine. You can read more about George and other former Teacher of the Year winners HERE.

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