If you’ve ever been in school, you’ve had a teacher who changed your life.
If you’re like most people, you think about that teacher from time to time. You mention her fondly, to your kids and with old friends. If the teacher is lucky — and still alive — you might track him down, and thank him in a phone call, letter or email.
Between now and December 15, you can do much more. You can win a horizon-expanding, life-changing teacher $10,000.
The Kennedy Center/Stephen Sondheim Inspirational Teacher Awards are a tangible way to thank educators — from grades K-12, and college — for the impactful work they have done. In addition to the nice monetary prize, honorees are showcased on the Kennedy Center website.
Nominators must be at least 18 years old, and must have been the nominee’s student. Nominators should create a written, audio or video story that highlights a single, specific interaction with the teacher — a moment of transformation or inspiration.
Judges are not looking for lists of accomplishments. They want to know how the teacher served as a mentor or role model. What life lessons were taught. How the teacher saw, and unlocked, untapped potential. That sort of thing.
Every Westporter must have a teacher to nominate, and a story to tell. Click here for details. And — even if you don’t complete the form — you can share inspiring “teacher moments” with other Westporters, by clicking “Comments.”
PS: Because “06880” is a place where “Westport meets the world,” there are 2 local connections to the Kennedy Center Inspirational Teacher Awards.
One is on its website. Among the links to past winning stories is one by David Pogue — the illustrious, creative tech guru who lives in town.
The other connection is Stephen Sondheim himself. In the summer of 1950, he was an apprentice at the Westport Country Playhouse.
Where, presumably, he learned a thing or two about himself and the world, from an inspirational, life-changing — if non-classroom — teacher.