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(Neb)-Education Week Brings Top Award To Chadron High Teacher  Listen

By: John Axtell Posted at: 05/09/2017 11:58 PM
CHADRON -  This is National Education Week and today is National Teachers' Day. Chadron School Board President Tom Menke says teachers are so important, it's not really enough to honor them just once a year.

     About half of all new teachers leave the profession within the first five years. One who didn't is Chadron High School teacher and coach Willie Uhing - and he is this year's winner of the UNL Freda Drath Battey Distinguished Educator Award.

      The award was created by the family of Freda Battey, a UNL graduate and former public school teacher, is awarded to an exemplary Nebraska secondary teacher for their work with students both inside and outside the classroom.

      The student-faculty committee that made the final decision said they were impressed with his reflection on teaching and his commitment to student learning.

     Only students at the UNL College of Education and Human Sciences may make nominations and Uhing was nominated by one of his former students, Alida Johnson. Menke thinks that makes Uhing's selection even more special.

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In her nomination,  Johnson calls Uhing a "devoted, exuberant, outstanding educator (whose) enthusiasm radiates throughout the school," with what he's done at Chadron High "legendary."

      In addition to serving as chair of the English department, Uhing is a coach, club sponsor, staff development trainer, and informal counselor.

    Chadron Superintendent Dr Caroline Winchester says Uhing's classroom abilities are easily seen in the state test scores of his juniors last year....who had an 86% proficiency in writing assessment - 11 with perfect scores - and 93% proficient in reading with 6 perfect scores.

      School counselor Loni Watson calls Uhing the decisive element at Chadron High School and uses a weather metaphor to explain...saying that it's "his personal approach that creates the climate and his mood that makes the weather. We are thankful for the sunshine."

      A Chadron State College graduate and the husband of Chadron Primary School Principal Libby Uhing, Willie Uhing was formally presented with the award last Friday at a UNL luncheon, receiving a school bell as well as a cash prize for himself and Chadron High.


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