Top Midlands teachers: Saluting the best

Click on the links to the right to learn more about each district's winner


Each spring, the state's public school system recognizes excellence within its ranks by naming a South Carolina Teacher of the Year.

The 85 school districts and Department of Juvenile Justice can nominate an educator to compete for the honor. District teachers of the year from Kershaw, Lexington and Richland counties all are in the running this year.

In the coming days, the state Department of Education expects to announce the five finalists for the award. Finalists go through interviews by judges and have their classrooms videotaped to determine the 2008 winner, who will be announced at a banquet April 25.

The winner gets a $25,000 bonus, use of a BMW sports car for a year and a yearlong leave from the classroom to serve as a roving ambassador for the state’s 49,000 public school educators.

The four other finalists will receive a $10,000 bonus.

The current titleholder is Ann Marie Taylor, a special education teacher at Pine Tree Elementary School in Kershaw County.

The state winner becomes a nominee for national teacher of the year.

Bill Robinson