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Two Teachers Selected for Challenger Outstanding Educator Award

Nita Johnson, a sixth grade teacher at Slaughters School in Webster County Schools and Dora Pittman, fifth grade teacher at Southwest Calloway Elementary in Calloway County Schools, were named the 2009-2010 Challenger Learning Centers Outstanding Educators during a presentation at the Challenger Learning Center.

Staff from the Challenger Learning Center at Paducah, recognized Johnson and Pittman as the centers fourth outstanding educators. During the presentation they presented both with a framed certificate and a $100 gift certificate for science and math supplies donated by Travis School Supply. In addition both districts receive one free mission for the 2010-2011 school year to the Challenger Learning Center at Paducah.

The Challenger Learning Center program is a comprehensive educational experience for students, Duncan said. We created this annual award to show our appreciation to the educators who help make our program so successful. We are excited to present this award to Ms. Johnson and Ms. Pittman.

Todd Marshall, Slaughters School principal, nominated Johnson for this award because she takes a special interest in each student. Randy McCallon, Assistant Superintendent for Calloway County Schools, nominated Pittman because she has the special quality of caring about each and every one of the students she teaches.

Duncan said several nominations were received from area schools. Numerous criterions were included in the nomination forms that included shows enthusiasm for math, science and/or technology education and incorporates innovative teaching strategies into their curriculum.

The Challenger Learning Center at Paducah is one in a network of over 45 centers worldwide. The concept of the Challenger Centers came from the families of the astronauts killed in the Challenger accident. The center at Paducah, located on the campus of West Kentucky Community and Technical College, is a result of a partnership between the college and Paducah Junior College, Inc. The center opened on August 16, 2002 and has been flying local students to the moon, Mars and comets ever since. For more information about the center please visit their website at