Posted Date: 05/13/2021
Lawton Public Schools Teacher Honored in 20 Under 2 List
Oklahoma honors 20 outstanding novice teachers
Lawton, OK-- The Teaching & Leading Initiative of Oklahoma (TLI) has honored twenty of the top novice teachers in the state in the third annual 20 Under 2 Novice Teaching Awards, a list of promising new Oklahoma teachers. The 20 Under 2 award celebrates emerging teachers who are setting the pace for excellent teaching and making Oklahoma’s future look bright. The honorees include Lawton Public Schools teacher Kaitlyn Hull.
Hull is a kindergarten teacher at Freedom Elementary School. She is an exceptionally well-rounded educator who continuously finds ways to increase academic rigor while also teaching crucial social and emotional skills. Hull leads by example and strives to validate her students’ feelings.
“Anytime I make a mistake during class, I make sure to turn it into a learning experience. My students see that even adults make mistakes. I have taught my students skills to manage their reactions and hope they continue to incorporate these techniques moving forward,” Hull said.
Across the state, principals, veteran teachers, and district leaders submitted their top novice teachers for consideration. Each nomination was reviewed by a committee of education professionals and chosen through a multi-stage selection process. The 20 honorees were selected for outstanding classroom culture, fostering academic success, and their commitment to Oklahoma students and communities. Freedom elementary assistant principal Sara Breeze and colleagues praise her talent.
“I consider her a tremendous asset to our school. It is difficult to find teachers with her teaching talent, ambition, and drive,” Breeze said. “She exhibits positive leadership for her grade level team by consistently sharing her ideas, resources, and knowledge for the betterment of the team. Her students love, respect, and thoroughly enjoy her classroom.”
Ms. Hull is an emergency certified teacher in her first year of teaching. She is a graduate of Southern New Hampshire University.
The 20 Under 2 Novice Teaching Awards were created to recognize the talent and dedication of Oklahoma’s newest teachers amidst a challenging landscape. In recent years, Oklahoma educators have grappled with limited resources, large class sizes, and low pay, and this year teachers faced a global pandemic along with new forms of distance learning. For educators just beginning their profession, these challenges are especially difficult. After five years, only about half of new teachers remain in the classroom and schools struggle to recruit high-quality teacher candidates. The 20 Under 2 awards acknowledges these difficulties, and honors new teachers’ whose emerging strengths and talents are needed now more than ever.
Thanks to the generous support of T.D. Williamson and Magic City Books, 20 Under 2 honorees will receive a $250 gift card to Magic City Books to build their classroom library. Honorees will also receive a gift box that includes a custom 20 Under 2 plaque, a Round Table membership from Magic City Books, a custom notebook and other goodies.
“Celebrating this year’s 20 Under 2 honorees is a bright spot amidst an especially difficult year. Oklahoma’s 2021 honorees have not only persisted through the pandemic, but their tremendous skill, hard work, and dedication has distinguished them as some of our most promising educators,” said TLI Executive Director Dr. Joanna Lein. “It is critical that we continue to find ways to invest in our state’s teaching talent because our students deserve the most skillful and experienced educators.”