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Nominations Encouraged for Michigan Lottery’s Excellence in Education Awards to Honor Outstanding Educators

Parents, students, school staff members, and others are encouraged to nominate outstanding public-school educators for the Michigan Lottery’s 2021-22 Excellence in Education awards.

All public-school employees may be nominated for the awards, which recognize educators who go "above and beyond" to make a difference in the lives of children. To nominate a public-school educator, go to http://bit.ly/ExcellenceInEducation.

The Michigan Lottery established the Excellence in Education awards in 2014 to recognize outstanding public-school educators across the state during the school year.

One outstanding educator will be selected each week and will receive a $1,500 cash prize plus a $500 grant to their classroom, school or school district. One of the weekly award winners will be selected to receive the Lottery’s Educator of the Year award and will receive a $10,000 cash prize.

Each winner also will receive a plaque and be featured in a news segment on the Lottery’s media partner stations: WXYZ-TV in Detroit, FOX 17 in Grand Rapids, FOX 47 in Lansing, and WNEM-TV, Saginaw.

The winner of the 2021 Educator of the Year award was Janice Smith. She is a school social worker at Fisher Magnet Lower Academy, which is part of the Detroit Public Schools Community District.

More than 800 educators were nominated during the seventh year of the educational awards program and 34, including Smith, were selected to win a weekly award.

Previous winners of the Educator of the Year award:

  • • 2020 – Megan Sidge, an Autism Spectrum Disorder teacher at Hickory Woods Elementary, which is part of the Walled Lake Consolidated Schools.
  • 2019 – Stewart Kieliszewski, an Earth science, biology, mechatronics, and media teacher for eighth through 12 graders at the Ubly Community Schools.
  • 2018 – Kerri Moccio, a literacy intervention specialist at Bedford Elementary School in Dearborn Heights
  • 2017 – Linda Holzwarth, a social studies teacher at Portage West Middle School in Portage
  • • 2016 – Daniel Carr, a Spanish and sports marketing teacher at Waverly High School in Lansing
  • • 2015 – Michael Craig, a special education teacher at the Charles Drew Transition Center in Detroit

Excellence in Education award nominees are evaluated on: Excellence, Dedication, Inspiration, Leadership and Effectiveness





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Revised: 11/30/21 19:39:50 -0800.





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