Ada High School is the 2022 winner of the Excellence in Education School Character award presented by the Professional Oklahoma Educators Foundation.
The Excellence in Education Awards Banquet recognizes and rewards Oklahoma educators who demonstrate a commitment to their students in teaching strength of character and excellence in the school or classroom. Award nominees must go through a rigorous application and evaluation process.
According to POE Foundation Executive Director Ginger Tinney, “These awards serve as an encouragement to not only Oklahoma educators, but also to the many businesses, organizations, and communities that have a stake in the character building and intellectual development of the children who will shape our state in the future.”
The foundation looks for how extensive and how creatively character is taught in every aspect from direct teaching, to decorations, to public recognition of students for their outstanding character.
Chemistry teacher Shawn Freeman accepted the award on behalf of the school. As the winner of the Character Award, Ada High School received $1,500 from the POE Foundation and commendation from Lt. Gov. Matt Pinnell.
“Our classroom teachers are intentional and purposeful in their efforts to promote character and culture in our schools,” said Mike Anderson, superintendent. “Expectations are high. We seek excellence in everything we do and that cannot happen without character and integrity.”
The teachers at Ada drive character-based activities that extend beyond the high school and spread excitement and partnership with other school sites and the community.
For example, the students exhibited the character trait of initiative by completing a Rapid Rehousing Project for a mom and her two children through Ada Regional United Way. The students set up a mock apartment in the Student Center and collected donations. At the end of the project, the high school students collected bedroom and living room furniture, kitchen appliances and pantry items for the family in need.
“So very often we students hear staff call us ‘world changers,’ when in reality it is you, the people teaching us, mentoring us, becoming people we can confide in, it’s you who are the real movers and shakers of this world. If it weren’t for the adults who walk these halls alongside us every day, the future would be looking quite bleak.” – Written by Ada High School students about their teachers.
The School Character Award was sponsor by Kimray, Inc.