Shorewood Intermediate School teacher named one of five Wisconsin Teachers of the Year by the DPI

·2 min read

A Shorewood Intermediate School teacher was recently honored as a Teacher of the Year by the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction.

Sarah Kopplin, who is a geography teacher at Shorewood Intermediate School, was one of five 2023 Wisconsin Teachers of the Year honored by the DPI. She received the award May 5 in a surprise ceremony at her school from state Superintendent Jill Underly. .

"It was just shocking to me. The kids were so excited. It was really fun to see their reaction. It stunned me. I had no idea," Kopplin said in a phone interview May 17.

Also receiving Teacher of the Year honors were Kaelee Heideman, a school counselor at Carl Traeger Elementary in the Oshkosh Area School District; Lori Danz, an outdoor education teacher at Superior High School in the School District of Superior; Peg Billing, a library media specialist at Lakeland Union High School in the Lakeland Union High School District; and Dustin Anderson, an art teacher at Grant and Grove Elementary Schools in Wisconsin Rapids Public Schools.

Kopplin said receiving the award was "incredibly humbling."

"I definitely feel very grateful to be recognized for my hard work and for my passion. I really, really love what I do, and I'm really glad I've chosen this profession. I'm still in shock, even now," Kopplin said.

An email from DPI communications officer Chris Bucher said Kopplin finds "innovative, resourceful ways to provide opportunities for all students." He also said Kopplin serves on the school's instructional leadership, as well as "on many district-level planning workgroups and has a sincere commitment to improving outcomes for students."

"Through her ability of creating authentic learning opportunities, students in her class leverage their leadership, voice, and choice to guide their individual learning experiences," Bucher wrote.

Wisconsin selects five Teachers of the Year annually to represent elementary schools, middle schools, high schools and special services. One of the five is selected after an interview process to represent the state in the Council of Chief State School Officers National Teacher of the Year program, according to the DPI's website. The representative for Wisconsin has not yet been chosen and will be selected in late summer.

The DPI considers all five teachers it selects for its Teacher of the Year program "and does not give special designation to the one chosen to represent the state in the National Teacher of the Year program," the DPI said on its website.

For more information on the selection process, visit dpi.wi.gov/teacher-year/program/selection-process.

Contact Alec Johnson at (262) 875-9469 or alec.johnson@jrn.com. Follow him on Twitter at @AlecJohnson12.

Our subscribers make this reporting possible. Please consider supporting local journalism by subscribing to the Journal Sentinel at jsonline.com/deal.

DOWNLOAD THE APP: Get the latest news, sports and more

This article originally appeared on Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Shorewood teacher receives state Teacher of the Year Award