While she teaches in Andover, Kansas Teacher of the Year Dyane Smokorowski stopped at Leavenworth schools Wednesday.
She was joined by other teachers who were finalists in the 2013 Kansas Teacher of the Year program. The eight-member team tours the state visiting school districts, colleges and universities.
They were in Leavenworth Wednesday because it is the home district to a member of the team. Laura Moyers, who teaches music at Anthony Elementary School, was selected as a regional Teacher of Year and a finalist in the statewide competition, which is sponsored by the Kansas State Department of Education.
Anthony was one of the stops on the team’s visit Wednesday.
While at Anthony, Smokorowski, who teaches eighth-grade language arts, said she was impressed by the Leavenworth school district.
“This is a district that’s very cohesive,” she said.
She said it’s evident that excellence is what people in the district are striving for. She said this is not just in terms of student success but includes teacher training, atmosphere in the classroom and leadership.
Smokorowski said one thing she takes away from the visit is how much teachers are appreciated in Leavenworth.
“They are the rock stars in the district,” she said.
The team’s visit began at the district’s central office where they met with administration and were provided information about the school system.
The team then moved to Anthony. While at Anthony, they attended an assembly that included a presentation about character traits.
They also visited a second-grade Black History Month wax museum in which students portrayed famous people. The team also toured the school.
Moyers took photographs throughout the visit. She said she’s the photographer for the team.
Moyers said the group will make a presentation in November when they meet with the 2014 Kansas Teacher of the Year team. The group will have to explain what their journey together has been like and what they’ve learned.
The team also visited Richard W. Warren Middle School and Leavenworth High School. The group also was scheduled to tour Fort Leavenworth.
Jake Potter, director of public relations for the Leavenworth district, said Wednesday morning that some members of the team may have to leave early because of the weather. He said some of them live in the Wichita area, which was expected to receive snow ahead of the winter storm moving into Leavenworth.