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LaRue County’s 2014 ExCEL Award winner is Traci Weaver, a teacher at Hodgenville Elementary School.
The ExCEL Award, sponsored by WHAS11 and LG&E KU honors teachers who have shown excellence in the classroom.
Weaver, a fourth-grade reading and science teacher who also coaches the Academic Team and Junior Beta Club, will be honored by her students and peers at a ceremony 9 a.m. March 26 at HES.
“I am so honored and humbled to win the ExCEL teacher of the year award,” said Weaver. “I have a motto: if it’s not fun for you, then it’s not fun for me. I make my science classes hands-on. We do a lot of activities and experiments. I try to make it fun, so the students remember the content we are learning. In fact, I rarely use a textbook.”
Weaver has been teaching 10 years. She earned a bachelor’s degree from Campbellsville University and master’s degree from Western Kentucky University.
Besides her regular teaching duties, she is a science cadre leader and a Kentucky Teacher Internship Program (KTIP) program leader. KTIP provides assistance to rookie teachers.
She is involved in the Green River Regional Educational Cooperative, learning about the state’s new science standards.
Sue Osborne, the principal at HES, called Weaver a “hands-on teacher” in her letter of recommendation for the award.
“She wants students to experience learning; she knows that’s what they need in order to be prepared for higher level math and science. She individualizes learning for her students, always aware they have different needs. Her positive attitude and caring personality create a climate of trust that promotes the self-confidence her students need to be successful.
Weaver, the daughter of Donna Coffey and the late Tom Coffey, has been teaching in the district for eight years. She and her husband, Steve, have two daughters, Bridgett and Layla.
Other nominees were:
• Christina Boone, a seventh-grade teacher at LaRue County Middle School. She has taught science and reading at LCMS for seven years.
• Missy Flanders, a third-grade teacher at Abraham Lincoln Elementary School. She has 20 years of teaching experience in LaRue County Schools.
• Aaron Howell, a special education teacher at LaRue County High School. He teaches math and English. He has taught in LaRue County four years.
Previous Excel winners
2005 – Kathy Ross (Magnolia Elementary School); 2006 – Martha Page (HES); 2007 – Rex Hanson (LCHS); 2008 – Susan Phelps (ALES); 2009 – Peggy Newton (HES); 2010 – Bev Heady (ALES); 2011 – Summer Garris (LCHS); 2012 – Heather Sutherland (ALES); 2013 – Lisa Hawkins.