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Five Finalists Named for 2021-2022 Teacher of the Year

Five Springfield Public Schools teachers have been named finalists for the 2021-2022 Teacher of the Year. Over 400 nominations were received and 123 of those nominated provided their teaching philosophy to the Teacher of the Year committee to be considered as a finalist. 

The Teacher of the Year will be announced April 19 at the annual Celebrate SPS banquet hosted by the Foundation for Springfield Public Schools.   

The finalists are: 

Amanda Adams, Health Sciences Academy @Mercy Teacher

a. adams I have a passion for supporting students' individual growth and development by inspiring them to reach for their goals, encouraging them to never give up, and challenging them to step out of their comfort zones.



Melanie Donnell, York Elementary, Kindergarten Teacher

Donnell Building relationships is the most delicate job we have as a teacher. Those relationships help motivate students to want to learn and grow, not just as a student but also as an empathetic member of society.



Bob Lynch, Glendale High School, Communication Arts Teacher

Lynch Educators are not meant to become stagnant; we are meant to explore new ideas and help others do the same.  New theories and pedagogies are not created by bystanders on the sideline; they are created by the educators and innovators.


Terri Schaffitzel, Pleasant View Elementary, Second Grade Teacher

Schaffitzel I want to create a safe environment for students. By providing them with positive encouragement, constructive curriculum, and creative modes of practice, they will excel.



Cary Sikes, Gray Elementary, Fourth Grade Teacher

Sikes My role is to encourage students to be kind, compassionate and empathetic. I firmly believe that showing students how to demonstrate civility, respect and empathy in today’s world is more important than ever.