Houston Educators named Finalists for 2014 H-E-B Excellence in Education Awards
Educators to Compete on a Statewide Level for $500,000 in cash prizes
Jo-Carolyn Goode | 4/6/2014, 12:39 p.m.
Eight Houston-area educators have been named finalists for a 2014 H-E-B Excellence in Education Award, spotlighting them as some of the best educators in Texas.
H-E-B’s Excellence in Education is the largest monetary awards program for educators in Texas, and among the largest in the nation. The honor was kept a surprise from the
educators, who learned they were finalists when H-E-B representatives visited their classrooms and schools with balloons, cake, and flowers.
Six teachers were presented with a $1,000 check for themselves and a $1,000 check for their schools. The teacher finalists are:
• Amanda Posterick, Metzler Elementary, Klein ISD (Rising Star Elementary)
• Jennifer Gallagher, Nolan Ryan Jr. High School, Alvin ISD (Rising Star Secondary)
• Lisa Guin, Maplebrook Elementary, Humble ISD (Leadership Elementary)
• Bart Taylor, A&M Consolidated High School, College Station ISD (Leadership Secondary)
• Pamela Berdou, William C. Velasquez Elementary, Lamar CISD (Lifetime Achievement Elementary)
• Angela Lorio, ALPHA Academy, Magnolia ISD (Lifetime Achievement Secondary)
Joining these outstanding teachers as finalists is Felicia Adams, principal of Lucian L. Lockhart Elementary in the Houston ISD, and Dr. Joe Coleman, principal of North Shore Sr. High School in the Galena Park ISD. As principal finalists, Adams and Lockhart received a $1,000 check for themselves and a $2,500 check for their school.
All finalists are invited to Houston on May 2-3, 2014 to compete on a statewide level for larger cash prizes totaling $430,000.
About the H-E-B Excellence in Education Awards:
H-E-B launched the Excellence in Education Awards program in cooperation with the Texas Association of School Administrators in 2002 as a positive way to support public education in Texas. It has become the largest monetary program for educators in the state, spotlighting best practices and celebrating the passion and creativity of Texas educators.
H-E-B asks customers, Partners (employees) and community members to nominate teachers, principals, districts, early childhood facilities and school boards in Texas. Each nominee is sent an invitation to complete an application online and is asked about their professional experiences, educational philosophies and achievements both in and out of the classroom.
A team of judges reviews the applications, narrowing the field to semi-finalists. From that pool, five regional judging panels comprised of former winners, administrators, and university and community leaders select 40 teacher and principal finalists. Finalists and their schools receive a cash prize of $1,000 to $2,500, depending on category.
Three separate panels select up to 18 school districts, public school boards and early childhood facilities as finalists, awarding $2,500 to $5,000 in cash prizes. Site visits are conducted to determine winners.
Teacher and principal finalists are invited to Houston May 2-3 to compete on a statewide level for larger cash prizes. A statewide panel of judges conducts a personal interview with each finalist to select winners.
This year, H-E-B will award $430,000 in cash and prizes at its annual awards gala.
Eight winners — two principals and six teachers — will be announced along with two school districts, one large and one small, a public school board (if selected) and an early childhood facility, at a celebratory dinner on May 3.
Each winning principal—one elementary school and one high school—will each receive $10,000 in cash for themselves and a $25,000 grant for their schools. The winning large school district will receive a $100,000 cash prize and the winning small school district will receive $50,000. The winning early childhood facility will receive $25,000 and a school board (if selected) will be awarded with $25,000.
The six winning teachers will include one elementary and one secondary teacher in each of three categories:
• Rising Star Award — Honors exceptionally promising teachers with less than 10 years of experience. Winners will each receive a $5,000 check for themselves and a $5,000 grant for their schools.
• Leadership Award — Honors teachers with 10 to 20 years in the classroom. Winners will each receive a $10,000 check for themselves and a $10,000 grant for their schools.
• Lifetime Achievement Award — Salutes teachers with more than 20 years of experience. Winners will each receive $25,000 in cash for themselves and a $25,000 grant for their schools.
H-E-B, with sales of more than $20 billion, operates more than 350 stores in Texas and Mexico. Known for its innovation and community service, H-E-B celebrated its 105th anniversary in 2010. Recognized for its fresh food, quality products, convenient services, and a commitment to environmental responsibility and sustainability, H-E-B strives to provide the best customer experience at everyday low prices. Based in San Antonio, H-E-B employs more than 80,000 Partners and serves millions of customers in more than 150 communities. For more information, visit www.heb.com.