A ninth-grade English teacher at Simon Kenton High School was named Teacher of the Year by the Kentucky Education Association, officials announced this week.
Leann Lewis graduated from Morehead State University in 2001 with a bachelor’s in English education and then earned her master’s in education from Indiana Wesleyan University in 2008, according to a news release. She has worked at Kenton High School for 19 years.
“This year has proven that as an education community we can work together to learn skills and strategies to support new learning formats, creative ways to engage students in person or virtually,” Lewis said in the release. “Just because we fill the role of the teacher and manager of the classroom does not mean that we are finished learning. I think that has influenced our students in a positive way as well; to see that learning is not just for school hours but for a lifetime.”
The Kentucky Education Association is a labor organization representing more than 40,000 active, aspiring and retired educators in the commonwealth. The Teacher of the Year award is given to a member who excels in five teaching areas: professional practice, advocacy for the profession, attention to diversity, community engagement and leadership in professional development.
“Leann Lewis embodies what a KEA educator in Kentucky strives to be,” Kentucky Education Association president Eddie Campbell said in the release. “She is dedicated and involved with her students, school, community and profession. She works to make each of them better. She is so deserving of this teacher of the year award.”
Lewis focuses on student engagement, community building and social and emotional learning at Simon Kenton. She was inspired by her own teachers growing up, and by her mother, who was a preschool teacher and a kindergarten instructional assistant.
“Teaching has always been my first career choice,” Lewis said. “I love being a teacher because I love learning and sharing what I have learned.”