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Local named ‘MT Teacher of the Year’ finalist

Tamara Fisher Alley, K-12 Gifted Education Specialist for Polson, is a MT Teacher of the Year finalist

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News from the Montana Department of Education

HELENA — Superintendent Elsie Arntzen congratulates the four finalists for the 2024 Montana Teacher of the Year award. The selected finalist will represent Montana during the 2024 National Teacher of the Year Program in Washington. Catherine Matthews was Montana’s 2023 Teacher of the Year. She currently teaches Early Childhood Special Education Preschool at Hyalite Elementary School in Bozeman, Montana.

This year, 41 teachers from across the state were nominated by community members, teachers, administrators, and parents. Of those nominated, 19 teachers successfully applied to be the 2024 Teacher of the Year. The process is framed by two committees of stakeholders. This first committee reviewed and narrowed the applications to these four finalists. The committee to choose a finalist will be represented by the Governor’s Office, the Board of Public Education, the Office of the Commissioner of Higher Education, the Office of Public Instruction, the School Administrators of Montana, the Montana Advisory Council on Indian Education (MACIE), and Catherine Matthews.

All four finalists teach at schools located on reservations, received their degrees from the Montana University System, and have between 12 and 28 years of classroom experience. The local finalists is:

Tamara Fisher Alley, a K-12 Gifted Education Specialist for the Polson School District.“ These four finalists reflect the qualities found in all of our Montana teachers,” said Superintendent Elsie Arntzen. “I am very appreciative of the dedication these teachers have to our Montana students, families, and education system. We are all Montana proud of the finalists. Best of luck to you all in the final interview process.”

The National Teacher of the Year Program provides professional learning and development to increase teachers’ leadership skills. The program focuses on bringing attention to the importance of excellence in teaching.

On Sept. 12, 2023, a committee will meet to interview the finalists and choose the 2024 Montana Teacher of the Year. Superintendent Arntzen will announce and honor the finalist during a celebration ceremony at their school.


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