Parkview Drama Teacher Selected as AR Teacher of the Year Regional Finalist

Spencer Sutterfield, Parkview Arts & Science Magnet High School, is one of the 15 exceptional teachers selected as 2016 Arkansas Teacher of the Year Regional Finalists. Sutterfield teaches Drama and Theater Arts to 11th and 12th grade students.

“To be selected as a regional finalist is an honor,” Arkansas Department of Education Commissioner Johnny Key said. “These outstanding teachers have set the standard of excellence for their schools, districts and the state. I commend them for their dedication, commitment and hard work.”

Gov. Asa Hutchinson and Commissioner Key will recognize the regional finalists at 10:30 a.m. Sept. 17 in the Old Supreme Court room at the Capitol. During the ceremony, the top four finalists will be announced.

The Arkansas Teacher of the Year program is part of the National Teacher of the Year program, which began in 1952. Teachers who exhibit strong teaching skills, leadership and dedication are nominated for the award.

A long-time supporter, the Walton Family Foundation is providing a grant allowing each regional finalist to receive a $1,000 award. The teacher selected as the Arkansas Teacher of the Year will receive an additional $14,000.

The selection committee will conduct site visits for each of the four finalists. During the site visits, the committee will observe the teacher in the classroom and conduct interviews with the teacher and school administration. A surprise notification announcing the 2016 Arkansas Teacher of the Year will be held later this fall. 

In addition to the recognition ceremony, a reception for the regional finalists will be held in Room 207 at the Capitol immediately following the event Sept. 17. An ADE Communications Cabinet meeting involving the regional finalists will follow at 11:30 a.m. in the ADE Auditorium at the Arkansas Department of Education. State Board of Education members may be in attendance at all events, but no official SBE business will be conducted.

To learn more about the ATOY program, in addition to the nominating process, go to

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