By Erin Albanese
Math teacher Luke Wilcox, who is credited with playing a large role in creating a culture of success at East Kentwood High School, is the 2017-2018 Michigan Teacher of the Year.
Wilcox, who began his teaching career at East Kentwood 16 years ago, was honored today with the award, announced by State Superintendent Brian Whiston, at an assembly attended by students, educators and Wilcox’s family. He was selected from between 60 and 70 nominees.
Wilcox said he is thankful to many, including teachers who served as incredible mentors to him and his students, who “inspire, push and help me to grow.”
“You guys are the reason I come to school every day,” he told students in the audience.
He succeeds Tracy Horodyski, a Kenowa Hills teacher who was the 2016-17 MTOY.
Wilcox teaches Advanced Placement statistics, with a very high percentage of his students passing the AP test. He has served as a leader in school improvement since East Kentwood was named a state Priority School four years ago. Since then it has leapt from the 4th percentile mark, meaning 19 out of 20 schools in Michigan were deemed better, to the 49th percentile today.
Wilcox is also an academic support coach, and leads a group called Rising Teacher Leaders to empower new teachers. He is a recent recipient of the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics Teaching Award.
Dave Stuart Jr., world history and English teacher for Cedar Springs Public Schools, was one of four finalists for the MTOY award.
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