CHARLESTON, W.Va. — A fifth grade teacher in Berkeley County was honored Wednesday night for her exceptional efforts in the classroom.
Erin Sponaugle was named the 2014 West Virginia Teacher of the Year during a ceremony at the Clay Center in Charleston.
State Board of Education President Gayle Manchin said this achievement is not taken lightly.
“It’s sort of the apex of their profession to be recognized by your peers and by educational leaders that you excel in your job,” she said.
Sponaugle has been a teacher for 10 years and currently works at Tomahawk Intermediate Middle School.
She received a Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education from Shepherd University and a Master of Arts in Educational Leadership from West Virginia University.
Manchin said it takes passion to get to this point.
“They love what they do,” she said. “They love being a part of building a childs life into a successful, accomplished adult.”
As Teacher of the Year, Sponaugle will receive an educational technology package valued at around $15,000, a Toyota care to drive for a year and cash awards from Highmark Blue Cross/Blue Shield and Horace Mann Insurance.
She was selected by a committee out of four finalists who were their county Teacher of the Year winners.
“This is the greatest tribute you can pay to a teacher is a job well done and that you have students out there that are also commenting on who has made the biggest impact in their lives,” Manchin said.
The other three finalists were Jonna Kuskey, Marshall County; Meagan Cahill, Mercer County; Kimberly Cook, Nicholas County.