ROCKFORD (WREX) -
Lynne Olsen, an instrumental music teacher at Auburn High School, has been named a finalist for the Illinois State Board of Education's Teacher of the Year.
A selection committee reviewed 231 nominations this year and announced the 12 finalists for the 2015 award today.
"This program gives us the opportunity to meet outstanding educators at every level and recognize leadership and achievements in classrooms throughout Illinois," said State Superintendent of Education Christopher A. Koch.
Nominations are scored based on personal background information, the nominating recommendation and letters of support from colleagues, parents and students. In addition, nominees must respond to questions focusing on student success, collaboration, continuous learning and leadership. Scores are compiled and averaged to determine one of three levels of recognition: excellence, merit and recognition.
The state education board announced today the 12 finalists for the award, and the winner will be named during the "Those Who Excel" banquet in October.
The finalists include:
— Seth Brady, Naperville Community Unit School District 203 — Susan Diggle, Germantown Hills School District 69 — Lisa Doughan, Community Unit School District 4 — Steven Elza, Township High School District 211 — Lauren Hoeft, Kildeer Countryside Community Consolidated School District 96 — Jamie Jones, Alton Community Unit School District 11 — Heather Kraus, Oswego Community Unit School District 308 — Mary Lynn Meredith, McLean County Unit 5 — Lynne Olson, Rockford Public Schools District 205 — Jennifer Smith, Monticello Community Unit School District 25 — Emily Weiss, Grayslake Community High School District 127 — Mary Wirth, Community Unit School District 140