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Teachers of the Year announced
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DeKalb County’s top-five Teachers of the Year have been announced.This year's honorees from each school at the building level are LeVaughnda Midgett, a kindergarten teacher at Smithville Elementary School, Anita Puckett, an eighth-grade U.S. History teacher at DeKalb Middle School; Kathryn Wisinger, an ESL (English as a Second Language) teacher at DeKalb Middle and DCHS grades 6-12, Elizabeth Nolt, a fourth-grade teacher at Northside Elementary School and Tammy Payne, a sixth-grade teacher at DeKalb West School.Competition for system-wide Teacher of the Year ran through February, and will be announced at the Teacher of the Year Banquet in May. These teachers also compete at the regional level in March, and if selected they will represent DeKalb County at the state level competition.The Tennessee Teacher of the Year Program is designed to promote recognition, respect and appreciation for teachers; to stimulate interest in teaching as a career; and to encourage public involvement in education.This program is sponsored annually by the Tennessee Department of Education and the Niswonger Foundation.The Tennessee Teacher of the Year represents Tennessee at the National Teacher of the Year competition, which is sponsored by the Council of Chief State School Officers and Scholastic, Inc.Teachers of the Year are selected competitively through five cycles: Building, System, Field Service Center Region, Grand Division and State; and from three categories (levels of teaching); Grades Pre K-4, 5-8, 9-12.Teachers selected at each cycle receive local recognition and awards underwritten by local sources. State recognition/awards include a banquet honoring the nine State Teacher of the Year finalists and certificates of appreciation from the Governor.