Hubbard Program to Reward Teachers

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The Indianapolis-based Hubbard Family Foundation Inc. has announced a plan to invest up to $400,000 to reward "life-changing" Indianapolis Public Schools teachers. The United Way of Central Indiana will administer the program which will select four teachers each year to receive $25,000.

November 18, 2013

News Release

Indianapolis, Ind. -- Indianapolis residents and longtime education champions Al and Kathy Hubbard have announced a new program to reward Indianapolis Public Schools (IPS) teachers who make a tremendous difference in turning around the lives of students.

The Hubbard Family Foundation plans to invest up to $400,000 to create the Hubbard Prize for Life-Changing Teachers, through which four teachers will be selected annually to receive $25,000. The first awards will be given in 2014, with plans to continue the program through at least 2016. Six finalists also will be awarded $1,000 each.

Indiana Pacer and IPS alumnus George Hill will join the Hubbards and the Hubbard Family Foundation to help promote the award by appearing in advertisements and public service messages. He also will serve on the winner-selection committee.

Hill is eager to support this effort because his own life was touched by the work of his English teacher, who encouraged him to fulfill graduation requirements and tutored him so he could make up lessons after a bout of pneumonia put him at risk of not graduating.

The Hubbards have been involved in school reform for more than 20 years, supporting school choice, charter schools, and special programs in IPS. They were inspired to create the prize after reading the story of a John Marshall Community High School student whose life was turned around by the caring influence of his reading teacher. Today that student is in college.

"Next to national security, the biggest challenge facing our country is providing all students access to a high-quality education," said Al Hubbard, who serves as Chairman of E & A Companies, an Indianapolis-based business, and was Director of the National Economic Council under President George W. Bush. "We are creating this award because teachers transform the lives of our community’s most vulnerable children every day and we think this heroic work deserves recognition."

The program will be administered by United Way of Central Indiana, which focuses on education's critical role in breaking the cycle of poverty as one of its key issue areas.

"Teachers are the most important factor in improving education, yet they too often are overlooked and underappreciated," said Ann D. Murtlow, United Way's president and CEO. "This award highlights the critical roles teachers play in our community."

All full-time IPS teachers, as well as teachers at Arlington High School, Manual High School, Emma Donnan Middle School and TC Howe High School, are eligible for the awards.

The Hubbards celebrated the creation of the new award today by presenting a $25,000 gift to Jamie Kalb, a former IPS reading teacher whose story moved them to establish the new prize. A student who was once considered a troublemaker credits Kalb with instilling in him the desire to graduate from college.

"Teachers change the lives of our young people every day," said Dr. Lewis D. Ferebee, IPS superintendent. "This phenomenon can been observed daily as our team touches the youth of Indianapolis within and outside of the school day. This is an exciting opportunity to recognize the work of our servants who encourage and inspire a brighter future for us all. We are very fortunate to have the support of the Hubbard Family, United Way and George Hill, one of our own graduates, who represents one of many IPS success stories."

Nominations open today and will be accepted from IPS teachers, parents, alumni, administrators and students until Friday, January 24, 2014. United Way will select semi-finalists from among the nominees, and a selection committee appointed by United Way will chose winners to be announced this spring.

Visit TeacherAward.org to submit a nomination, or go to a branch of the Indianapolis Marion County Public Library to pick up a paper nomination.

United Way of Central Indiana helps people learn more, earn more and lead safe and healthy lives. United Way gets things done by mobilizing people and community partners in six Central Indiana counties to identify, advance and advocate the best solutions. LIVE UNITED is a call to action for everyone to be part of the change. Visit uwci.org to learn more.

Source: United Way of Central Indiana