Return to Headlines

Distinguished Classroom Teachers announced

Distinguished Classroom Teachers announced

The Wichita Public Schools is proud to announce the 2020 Distinguished Classroom Teacher Award recipients in their respective categories. The recipients were surprised in their classrooms by BOE members, district leadership, members of the selection committee and family members.

Click here to see the surprise visits.  To see photos of all the recipients, click here.

The Distinguished Classroom Teacher Awards program honors outstanding teachers who affect the quality of education in the Wichita Public Schools.


Afton Miller, 4th grade teacher at Harry Street Elementary – New Teacher, Elementary

Runner up: Ashton Taylor, 3rd grade teacher at Christa McAuliffe Academy


Sam Belsan, social studies teacher at Coleman Middle School
– New Teacher, Secondary category

Runner up: Emma Reichenberger, language arts teacher at Stucky Middle School


Lisa Reeb, kindergarten teacher at Colvin Elementary
– Primary (Grades Pre-K – 2) category

Runner up: Lindsey McColley, kindergarten teacher at Gardiner Elementary School


Catherine Klunder, 5th grade teacher at Harry Street Elementary
– Intermediate (Grades 3 – 5) category

Runner up: Violette Gomez, 3rd grade teacher at Cloud Elementary


Denise Van Horn, math Pre-IB teacher at Robinson Middle School
– Middle School category

Runner up: Bill Schrant, P.E. teacher at Horace Mann Dual Language Magnet


Darham Rogers, World/US History and AVID teacher at East High School
– High School category

Runner up: Susan Credille, math teacher at Northeast Magnet High School


Tiffany Peterson, music teacher at Woodman Elementary
– Support Teacher, Elementary category

Runner up: Tish Freund, MTSS Facilitator at Cloud Elementary School


Leigh Kasper, counselor at Hamilton Middle School
– Support Teacher, Secondary category

Runner up: Rosemarie Donohoe, librarian at Curtis Middle School


Each teacher received a banner celebrating their accomplishment and a gift bag filled with WPS items including a gift card from the Parent-Teacher Resource Center.

Peers, building administrators, parents and/or students have nominated each of the recipients. A committee consisting of principals, assistant principals, teachers, support staff, the assistant superintendents of elementary and secondary schools and a member of United Teachers of Wichita selects the final recipients.

To view prior years’ recipients, click here.

The Distinguished Classroom Teachers will be recognized at the March 9 BOE meeting.