Twelve teachers have been named 2021 Arkansas Teacher of the Year regional finalists.
Four state semifinalists, selected from the 12 regional finalists. will be named at an event at the Governor's Mansion on July 31. Later, one of the four state semifinalists will be named the 2021 Arkansas Teacher of the Year.
In addition to receiving cash awards, the winner will spend the 2021-22 school year on paid leave to compete for the National Teacher of the Year honor, serve as an ex officio member of the state Board of Education and travel the state to participate in teacher and student programs.
Here are the 2021 regional finalists:
• Teresa Adams, grade 5 literacy, Cabot Middle School South, Cabot School District, Wilbur D. Mills Education Service Cooperative.
• Tia Brickey, library media specialist, Park Avenue Elementary School, Stuttgart School District, Arkansas River Education Service Cooperative.
• Bailey Coburn, general music, East Side Elementary School, Magnolia School District, South Central Service Cooperative.
• LeaAnn Ferrell, grade 4 math, Lake Hamilton Intermediate School, Lake Hamilton School District, Dawson Education Service Cooperative.
• Amber Harbin, grades K-8 science, STEM, and Project Lead the Way, Forest Heights STEM Academy, Little Rock School District, Pulaski County.
• Susan Henderson, library media specialist, Ellen Smith Elementary School, Conway School District, Arch Ford Education Service Cooperative.
• Katie Hutton, grades 10-12 business education, Academies of West Memphis, West Memphis School District, Great Rivers Education Service Cooperative.
• Todd Musgraves, grade 4 math and science, College Hill Elementary School, Texarkana School District, Southwest Arkansas Education Cooperative.
• Susanna Post, grades 9-12 math and business technology, Belle Point Alternative Center, Fort Smith School District, Guy Fenter Education Service Cooperative.
• Abbie Russell, grades 3-5 EAST, Linda Childers Knapp Elementary School, Springdale School District, Northwest Arkansas Education Service Cooperative.
• Melissa Steiner, library media specialist, Hackler Intermediate School, Mountain Home School District, Northcentral Arkansas Education Service Cooperative.
• Brycial Williams, first grade, Wynne Primary School, Wynne School District, Crowley's Ridge Educational Service Cooperative.
A selection panel assembled by the Arkansas Department of Education, Division of Elementary and Secondary Education, reviews applications and selects regional finalists. There is one regional finalist who represents each education service cooperative. One represents Pulaski County.
The panel selects four state semi-finalists from among the regional finalists. The panel will conduct site visits before selecting the state teacher of the year.