Described by her principal as a master teacher who is visionary and passionate, Savannah Boone is this year’s ExCEL winner for LaRue County Schools.

A special education teacher at LaRue County High School, Boone’s selection was announced Monday night during a dinner at the Hodgenville Woman’s Club and she will be honored March 18 at a formal celebration at the high school.

“I’m so honored to work in this district and to have my children go to school in this district,” Boone said. “There are so many people here who push me to be better and my child gets to be educated by these people meaning he will be better. There’s no greater joy than that.”

LaRue County Prin­cipal Denise Skaggs describes Boone’s talents in implementing innovative solutions for her students.

“Boone has a unique sense of recognizing the needs of our students and looking for ways to meet those needs,” Skaggs said.

Boone co-teaches English and it is a textbook example of what co-teaching needs to look like, she said.

“Last year, Savannah went to Boyle County to observe some teaching and when she came back she said, ‘they’re doing station teaching. We need to be working on station teaching.’ Lo and behold, I walk in the classroom a couple of weeks ago and I see station teaching going on, and station teaching at its finest,” Skaggs said.

A couple of years ago, Boone came to Skaggs to discuss a free program called Sources of Strength that she learned about and thought it really could benefit their students.

“We had a conference call with the person at the state office and within a couple of months we were training our peer leaders,” Skaggs said.

“It’s not like she sees something and says, ‘oh, let’s give this a try.’ She really puts her heart and soul into it and our district comes out with a win on anything Savannah does,” she said.

The high school has been recognized as a model site for co-teaching in Kentucky and Boone represents it perfectly, Skaggs said.

“To have Savannah in this capacity really has allowed us to continue to grow and develop our own staff into becoming more confident in their ability to co-teach,” she said.

Boone also organized a Transition Fair last year for her special education students to have all the resources they can at their disposal when they graduate.

She also is constantly advocating for her students and is passionate about what she does, Skaggs said.

Boone was one of four LaRue County teachers who were finalists for the award. Chelsie Walsh from LaRue County Middle School, Heather Hynes from Abraham Lincoln Elementary School and Debra Ellis from Hodgenville Elementary School also were recognized.

“I’m extremely humble because the teachers who were nominated are incredible,” Boone said.

ExCEL’s formal name is WHAS-TV Excellence in Classroom and Educational Leader­ship Award and is sponsored by LG&E-KU.

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