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Irmo Elementary teacher named 2017 South Carolina History Teacher of the Year

IRMO – Irmo Elementary School teacher Nicole Bishop has been named the 2017 South Carolina History Teacher of the Year. This award is presented annually by the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, a national organization dedicated to K-12 American history education.

“I am humbled and inspired by this recognition of being named the 2017 South Carolina History Teacher of the Year,” Bishop said. “I immediately think about all the caring, inquisitive and courageous learners, small and tall, that I have the pleasure to teach and learn alongside for the past 21 years. This award is because of them!”

Bishop received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and received a master’s in language and literacy education from the University of South Carolina. Bishop has combined her passion for history, literacy and the arts in her classroom, and her students have reaped the benefits.

“The South Carolina History Teacher Award is well-deserved by Mrs. Bishop,” said Irmo Elementary principal Tina McCaskill. “Her passion for integrating historical information into her reading and writing workshops is evident on a daily basis in her classroom and in discussions with her students. As principal of Irmo Elementary, I am so impressed with the level of passion Mrs. Bishop and all of our teachers possess!”

In addition to a $1,000 honorarium and an award ceremony, the Irmo Elementary School library will receive a core archive of American history books and Gilder Lehrman educational materials. Bishop will also receive an invitation to a 2018 Gilder Lehrman Teacher Seminar, a week-long program that offers teachers daily discussions with eminent historians, visits to historic sites and hands-on work with primary sources.

“Our state and nation have a rich history that not only teaches students about the past but instills in them values that help shape them into productive citizens,” said State Superintendent of Education Molly Spearman. “I congratulate Nicole on being chosen as a shining example of our many outstanding history teachers in South Carolina and know that she will continue to be a leader for her students and her peers.”

District Five Superintendent Dr. Stephen Hefner was thrilled to be notified of the announcement. “We are so proud of Mrs. Bishop and applaud her commitment to teaching American history. Her teaching practices exemplify the South Carolina Education Oversight’s 2020 vision that all students will graduate with knowledge and skills necessary to compete successfully in the global economy, participate in a democratic society and contribute positively as members of families and communities. As Neil Postman said in The End of Education: Redefining the Value of School, ‘Public education does not serve a public. It creates a public.’ We know that the future is bright because of the quality of citizens that Mrs. Bishop creates.”

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