Indianapolis Public Schools has named Alexandria Stewart as its 2019 Teacher of the Year. Stewart is a middle school teacher at Center for Inquiry School 70, where IPS says she has helped develop and implement the middle school program.

IPS Superintendent Lewis Ferebee surprised Stewart with the honor in her classroom before a school-wide celebration. The state’s largest school district says, in addition to her efforts in developing the middle school program, Stewart is an advocate for more focused training for teachers to effectively deal with students’ mental health issues.

"Teachers are often the most influential adults in a child’s life and are in a good position to effect positive changes in a child’s behavior," said Stewart. "Training outside of school ensures that teachers are able to create a supportive environment in which struggling students learn coping strategies, feel safe and are motivated to work towards long-term changes."

The principals at each IPS school nominate their top educator for the Teacher of the Year award. The winner is then chosen from a committee made up of fellow educators. 

The designation puts Stewart in the running for Indiana Teacher of the Year.

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