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Columbia Fund for Academic Excellence Awards

Seven Columbia Public Schools’ educators have been selected as this year’s Columbia Fund for Academic Excellence honorees.

Since its inception in the 1979-80 school year, the Columbia Fund for Academic Excellence has served to recognize more than 250 educators in the Columbia Public School District for their outstanding teaching, leadership and support for students. Each year, educators are selected from nominations submitted by parents and peers as outstanding educators. This year’s honorees and their respective categories are: 

  • Outstanding Elementary Educator, Grades PreK-2 
    Destiney Concannon, Beulah Ralph Elementary School
  • Outstanding Elementary Educator, Grades 3-5Ann Alofs, West Boulevard Elementary School
  • Outstanding Middle School Educator
    Julia Ross, Oakland Middle School
  • Outstanding High School EducatorMichael Bostwick, Battle High School
  • Outstanding Educator in a Specialized Area
    Shay Wisham, Hickman High School
  • Outstanding Beginning Teacher
    Loren Howard, West Middle School
  • Outstanding Administrator
    Blake Tekotte, CPS Transportation Coordinator

Honorees receive a $1,500 cash award and an engraved silver tray at a special banquet held in their honor in April.

The fund began through the work of Ray and Jeanne Lewis, with an initial contribution and extensive fundraising efforts. The late Mr. Lewis was a local attorney and former Board of Education member. Mrs. Lewis is a former teacher.  Thanks to the contributions and support from individuals, businesses and organizations, Columbia’s best educators continued to be recognized each year for their contributions to young people.