FRANKFORT, Ky. (NEWS RELEASE) -- Ron Adkisson, an eighth-grade teacher of U.S. history at South Oldham Middle School in Crestwood, has been named the 2012 Kentucky History Teacher of the Year. The award is co-sponsored by the Kentucky Historical Society (KHS), The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, HISTORY® and the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation on behalf of its Preserve America program.
Adkisson will receive a $1,000 honorarium and will be in the running to be named the 2012 National History Teacher of the Year this fall. South Oldham Middle School’s library will receive a core archive of history books and educational materials from the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History and HISTORY®. Adkisson also will be invited to a 2013 Gilder Lehrman Teacher Seminar, and South Oldham Middle School will be named a Gilder Lehrman Affiliate School.
Kent Whitworth, KHS executive director, and Stuart Sanders, KHS teacher professional services administrator, will be on hand to honor Adkisson at the Oldham County Board of Education meeting, Sept. 24 at Camden Station Elementary.
Adkisson began his career at Oil Springs Elementary School in Paintsville and has taught at Oldham South Middle School for the last 23 years. He has a bachelor’s degree from the University of the Cumberlands and a master’s degree from the University of Louisville. This award comes in addition to several honors Adkisson has received at the school and state level throughout his teaching career.
“It is my greatest desire to create a classroom environment that is so awe-inspiring and engaging that the students will absolutely refuse to be absent for fear of missing something,” said Adkisson.
Inaugurated in 2004, the National History Teacher of the Year Award promotes and celebrates the teaching of American history in classrooms across the United States. The award honors one exceptional K-12 teacher of American history from each of the 50 states, the District of Columbia, Department of Defense schools and U.S. territories.
“This award gives us the chance to recognize great history teachers across the country,” said Lesley S. Herrmann, executive director of the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History. “It puts exceptional educators front and center.”
The 2012 award honors middle and high school teachers of seventh through 12th grades. The award alternates, and the 2013 award will go to an elementary school teacher. The selection of the state winner is based upon several criteria, including: at least three years of classroom experience in teaching American history; a demonstrated commitment to teaching American history (including state and local history); evidence of creativity and imagination in the classroom; effective use of documents, artifacts, historic sites, oral histories and other primary resources to engage students with American history.
From the state winners, one is recognized as the National History Teacher of the Year and will be honored in a fall ceremony. The winner, together with the nominator and two of the winner’s students, will travel to the national recognition ceremony with expenses paid by the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History.
Nominations can be made by a student, parent, colleague, supervisor or other administrator familiar with the teacher’s work. To be considered for the 2013 award, elementary teachers must be nominated by Feb. 1, 2013. For more information about the nomination process, visit www.gilderlehrman.org/nhtoy.