One of four finalists for the National Teacher of the Year program is Chris Gleason, an instrumental music teacher and band director at Patrick Marsh Middle School in the Sun Prairie Area School District.
Evers spoke with Gleason after naming him the Wisconsin Middle School Teacher of the Year in September.
“Chris is a perfect example of how teachers make a lasting impact on their students when they support their needs in addition to challenging them academically,” said State Superintendent Tony Evers.
Gleason started a program to provide instruments to any student interested in learning to play, even when the cost of instruments is prohibitive for families.
Businessman and philanthropist Herb Kohl, a co-sponsor of Wisconsin’s Teacher of the Year program, called Gleason “an innovative educator and leader” who “represents the outstanding teachers throughout Wisconsin who inspire students in classrooms every day.”
Gleason and the other three Wisconsin Teachers of the Year are currently working together on how they can “make the biggest impact” for the teaching profession during 2017.
Gleason’s application to be National Teacher of the Year included passionate reflections on the need to publicly communicate the complexity of teaching of teachers.
Evers said he was “positive” that Gleason “will represent Wisconsin and the high caliber of teachers we have across our state well in the next round of the National Teacher of the Year Program.”
Following a rigorous interview process, the selection committee is expected to announce this spring who will be the National Teacher of the Year.