Superintendent's Memo #048-09

State seal, Commonwealth of Virginia

Department of Education

February 27, 2009

TO: Division Superintendents

FROM: Patricia I. Wright, Superintendent of Public Instruction

SUBJECT: Preserve America History Teacher of the Year Award

The Virginia Department of Education, in cooperation with the Gilder Lehrman Institute for American History, announces the sixth annual Preserve America History Teacher of the Year Award. This award honors exceptional teachers of American history across the country. One finalist from each state, the District of Columbia, the Department of Defense schools, and the U.S. territories is selected annually. From these finalists, a national winner is recognized as the National Preserve America History Teacher of the Year.

Any full-time elementary school teacher who teaches American history as his or her primary subject within the framework of his or her school program, and has demonstrated excellence according to the criteria governing the award is eligible for nomination. Winners will be selected based on the following criteria:

Nominations may be made by a department or division head, a division superintendent, or a principal, and must include:

Please submit an original and five copies of all written materials. Nominations should be submitted to the following address no later than April 28, 2009.

Betsy S. Barton
History and Social Science Specialist
Virginia Department of Education
P.O. Box 2120
Richmond, VA 23218-2120

Each state winner will receive a cash award of $1,000 and a plaque honoring them as the History Teacher of the Year. The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History will present the winner’s school with an archive of primary historical materials in honor of the state winner.

Winners will be selected by a panel of distinguished history educators under the supervision of Preserve America and the Gilder Lehrman Institute.

For additional information, please contact Betsy Barton, specialist for history and social science, by e-mail at or by telephone at (804) 225-3454. Additional information on the Preserve America History Teacher of the Year program is available at

PIW / BSB / vdg