FLORENCE, SC – State Superintendent of Education Molly Spearman surprised North Vista Elementary School teacher, Mary Woodward, at her school with news that she has been selected as one of five finalists for the South Carolina Teacher of the Year award.
“As a former music teacher, I know firsthand the important role that the arts play in a student’s education experience,” said Superintendent Spearman. “Mary’s ability to engage her students and integrate other subject areas in her classroom is remarkable. She is not only a leader in the Florence community but also for arts educators across our state.”
“Ms. Woodward is an innovative and creative educator who looks for the talents in all children. She is also mindful of the need to work collaboratively across all curriculum areas to provide each child a quality education,” said Florence School District One Superintendent Dr. Randy Bridges.
As one of five finalists, Woodward will receive $10,000 and go on to the next stage of competition which involves an in-person interview with a team of expert judges.
“Even if it means that I have to give up something in return I do the same thing with my own children and that’s why this honor is so important cause I finally get to give my own children a reason to be as proud of me, look at me, as proud of me as I am of them,” said Mary Woodward.
The South Carolina Teacher of the Year Gala will be held May 3rd in Columbia. The overall winner receives a total of $25,000 and gets to drive a brand new BMW for one year while advocating for the teaching profession across the state.