School system honors top teachers at awards ceremony

Two of Henrico County's finest educators were named the 2011 Gilman Teacher of the Year and First-Year Teacher of the Year at an awards ceremony last week. Gail C. Wood of Hermitage High School and Ashley Ciara Sweatt of Fair Oaks Elementary School were among the 114 teachers honored for their dedication in the classroom.
Gail Wood

Wood, who teaches French and Spanish at Hermitage High School, was named the school division's 2011 Gilman Teacher of the Year. Finalists for the award were Sally M. Austin of Pemberton Elementary School; Mindy Fennemore Dobrinski of Holman Middle School; Marcelle Armstrong Hicks of Varina Elementary School; and Alisa Smith of Harvie Elementary School.
Ashley Sweatt

Sweatt, the 2011 First-Year Teacher of the Year, teaches third-grade at Fair Oaks Elementary School. Finalists for the award were Lauren Bew of Twin Hickory Elementary School; Elizabeth Foster of Carver Elementary School; and Lindsey Pantele of Glen Allen High School.

The Henrico Education Foundation supported the event, and Herff Jones Inc. donated a $1,000 cash award for the Gilman Teacher of the Year winner and $500 for each of the four finalists.

In addition, Beth Reed, an autism teacher at Mehfoud Elementary School, was named the Christie Award winner for 2011. The Christie Award recognizes a member of Exceptional Education and Support Services whose contribution to HCPS has been exemplary in service of children and their families.
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