Finalists named for teacher award


SIDNEY — The Sidney Rotary Club and the Midwest Regional Educational Service Center have named six finalists in their second annual Excellence in Education award program.

The award was established in 2018 to honor teachers in Shelby County schools. Three will be named winners during the Rotary Club’s Service above Self Luncheon, May 13.

A three-judge panel will interview the finalists, April 23, to decide who the winners will be. A nine-judge panel selected the finalists from among 20 nominations.

The winners and their nominators will be recognized at the luncheon.

The finalists are Brett Bickel, of Sidney High School; Derek McCracken, of Houston Local Schools; Lisa Meiners, of Sidney Alternative School; Michelle Muhlenkamp, of Russia Local Schools; Magan Nickels, of Upper Valley Career Center; and Ashlee Zimpfer, of Botkins Local Schools.

According to award founder Thomas Clark, nominees had to be state-certified teachers and lead pre-kindergarten through 12th-grade classes. Spouses and children of current Rotary Club officers, board members or members of the award committee were not eligible for consideration. A teacher can be nominated in more than one year, but can win only once.

Nominators were asked to submit essays describing how their nominee meets the requirements for innovation, use of best practices and masterful teaching. Winners will receive plaques.