4 Jacksonville teachers honored with annual award

Four local teachers who bring more than 97 years of teaching experience combined to the table received one of the country’s highest monetary awards this week.

On Wednesday, respective school principals and Diane Yendol-Hoppey, the dean of the University of North Florida’s College of Education and Human Services, surprised each of the four women as they were teaching. They include:

  • Meshellia Hughes, third grade math teacher at Andrew A. Robinson Elementary
  • May Hotard, Spanish teacher at Bishop Kenny High School
  • Crystal Parker, Advanced Via Individual Determination (AVID) and English teacher at Edward H. White High School
  • Sara Henry, reading and language arts teacher at Ruth Upson Elementary

The teachers were named 2022 Gladys Prior Awards for Career Teaching Excellence winners and given $ 15,000 each.

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About the Gladys Prior Awards for Career Teaching Excellence

May Hotard was honored for her work teaching students with learning disabilities and her willingness to stay after hours to assist students.

Established in 1998 by Gilchrist Berg, founder and president of Water Street Capital, the award honors teachers with lifelong careers in education. Berg, who named the award after his fourth-grade teacher at Ortega Elementary School, has given more than $ 2 million to honor Jacksonville teachers, according to a news release.

“The Gladys Prior Awards are a wonderful opportunity to recognize the exceptional teachers in the Jacksonville area who are dedicated to education and making a significant difference and impact with their students,” said Yendol-Hoppey. “We are very appreciative of Gilchrist Berg for his continued commitment to education with these awards.”




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