State chooses educator from Calvert County to be Maryland's 1999 Teacher of the Year

October 17, 1998|By Howard Libit | Howard Libit,SUN STAFF

Rachael Younkers, a seventh-grade social studies teacher at Plum Point Middle School in Calvert County, was named the 1999 Maryland Teacher of the Year last night.

"My classroom motto is that I would like my students to treat others as they would like to be treated themselves," said Younkers. "I would like to be treated like this every day."

The award was announced by Maryland state schools Superintendent Nancy S. Grasmick during a ceremony at Martin's West honoring the teachers of the year from the state's 24 public school systems.

"The tremendous knowledge, unflagging enthusiasm and profound dedication shown by this teacher is truly inspiring," Grasmick said.

In addition to the award, Younkers received a $5,000 check from the Maryland Business Roundtable Foundation and a variety of other prizes, including a trip on The Pride of Baltimore II. She will be the state's nominee in the national Teacher of the Year competition, which is expected to be decided in the spring.

Younkers -- whose mother is a teacher -- is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Goucher College. She said her platform as 1999 teacher of the year will be to encourage "the best and brightest students" to enter the teaching profession.

The other six finalists in the state competition were James J. Wharton, a music teacher at Catonsville High School in Baltimore County; Kurt W. Bittle, a visual arts teacher at Bel Air High School in Harford County; Debra R. Messer, a gifted-and-talented research teacher at Hammond High School in Howard County; David Chia, a fourth-grade teacher at Georgian Forest Elementary School in Montgomery County; Carol Corwell-Martin, a third-grade teacher at Salem Avenue Elementary School in Washington County; and Susan T. Costanzo, an English/journalism teacher at Stephen Decatur High School in Worcester County.

Pub Date: 10/17/98

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