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District 158's Burkhart named Educator of the Year

Published: Sunday, March 2, 2014 11:40 p.m. CST • Updated: Sunday, March 2, 2014 11:43 p.m. CST

HUNTLEY – District 158's academic focus on technology has made an administrator from the Huntley-based school district an educator of the year.

Marisa Burkhart, the district's educational director, recently was named the 2014 Educator of the Year by the Illinois Computing Educators, according to a District 158 news release.

Burkhart has managed the district's expanding classroom tablet initiative and helped develop Huntley High School's blended, online-learning program.

The Illinois Computing Educators selects a teacher and technology administrator each year for the statewide honor.

Nominees have to demonstrate outstanding contributions to the integration of technology and the improvement of teaching and learning in their school or district, the news release states.

In her administrative role, Burkhart has managed the day-to-day operations of the district's tablet initiative and has overseen the professional development program for teachers.

Nearly 6,000 students from District 158 are expected to be using tablets in the classroom by the upcoming school year. The district started the digital transformation at Martin Elementary last school year and has since expanded the tablets to its elementary and middle schools.

Burkhart also helped research and develop Huntley High's blended learning program, which combines online coursework with traditional classroom instruction. More than 1,000 high school students currently are enrolled in blended courses, the news release states.

Burkhart was presented the award Friday during the Illinois Computing Educators' state conference.

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