Michigan Virtual President Jamey Fitzpatrick (left), Annette Gleason, Ben Ashby and State Superintendent of Public Instruction Brian Whiston.

Annette Gleason of Negaunee is Michigan Virtual’s 2015 Online Teacher of the Year.

Since 2008, Michigan Virtual has chosen one online instructor to represent this special breed of educators who combine the unique skills of a classroom teacher with the equally unique skills of an online teacher. Gleason, the lead math instructor at Michigan Virtual for Students, is known for her “unparalleled commitment to her students.”

Gleason has been teaching online for five years, after four years teaching math at Gwinn High School in the Upper Peninsula. She said she was honored to be recognized by Michigan Virtual as the Online Teacher of the Year.

Michigan Virtual is an elite organization that provides innovative instructional opportunities,” she said. “I am fortunate to work for an organization that takes pride in providing quality learning experiences that aid in the success of Michigan students.”

Gleason received the award at Michigan Virtual’s annual professional inservice conference for its instructional staff. Ben Ashby of Zeeland was the other finalist for the award. Ashby teaches Spanish at Zeeland Middle School and has worked as a contract and part-time instructor for Michigan Virtual for eight years.

Governor Rick Snyder and State Superintendent of Public Instruction Brian Whiston congratulated Gleason for being selected as the eighth online teacher of the year.

In a written statement, Gov. Snyder said: “As an outstanding online teacher Annette is helping to propel the State of Michigan to a leadership position in online learning. By creating personalized and interactive online learning environments, Michigan will provide students more education options that best meet their needs.”

State Superintendent of Public Instruction Brian Whiston thanked Annette for her “dedication to Michigan students who are at the forefront of learning in the 21st century way. Your success in meeting these challenges is what sets you apart.”

In online learning, course content and instruction is delivered over the web, with students following lessons, completing assignments and interacting with instructors through email and discussion rooms.

“We are fortunate to have some of the most dedicated and talented online instructors in the U.S. teaching for the Michigan Virtual for Students,” said Jamey Fitzpatrick, President & CEO of Michigan Virtual. “Annette and Ben provide exceptional support for the online students they serve from around the state and they are role models for the 21st-century teaching profession.”

About Michigan Virtual

Michigan Virtual is a private, nonprofit Michigan corporation established by the State of Michigan in 1998 to serve as a champion for online learning. It is the parent organization of the Michigan Virtual for Students and Michigan Virtual Learning Research Institute.

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