CHARLESTON - Jennifer Schwertfeger, a science teacher from Cameron High School in Marshall County, has been named the 2020 West Virginia Teacher of the Year by the West Virginia Department of Education.
The honor was announced during a ceremony Wednesday night at the Embassy Suites in Charleston.
Schwertfeger is a 10-year veteran of teaching both traditional and college-level science courses, and was recognized for creating meaningful, hands-on and "minds-on" lessons for her students, the department said in announcing the award.
"Mrs. Schwertfeger's dedication to her students and her profession can be seen in everything she does," said Steven Paine, West Virginia's superintendent of schools. "Her classroom is where passion and learning combine to ignite an understanding and love for science within her students. She is a vital resource to our state as an effective STEM educator who is committed to be the best teacher possible and getting the best out of her students."
The Huntington area had two among the six finalists for the award: Clara "T.C." Tucker-Clemons of Highlawn Elementary School in Huntington, and Alexandria Amorium of Wayne High School in Wayne.
Schwertfeger will now be considered for the U.S. Teacher of the Year Award, as well as participate in professional development and speaking engagements across the country. She also receives a car for professional use throughout the year and a total $11,000 in prize money sponsored by Coca-Cola, Horace Mann Insurance and Highmark.
Finalists, including Tucker-Clemons and Amorium, receive a $300 classroom grant, a classroom technology package, a West Virginia-themed glass piece from Blenko Glass and a $500 gift card from Coca-Cola.