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Yorktown teacher receives $25K award during Teacher Appreciation Week

Posted at 5:24 PM, May 08, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-08 17:24:18-04

YORKTOWN, Va. - One Yorktown teacher received the surprise of a lifetime.

During this year's Teacher Appreciation Week, a third-grade teacher at Coventry Elementary School, Taylor Goodson, received a $25,000 Milken Educator Award.

The $25K award was presented by the Milken Family Foundation during a school assembly. The school says she was recognized for her innovation in strengthening student literacy and her exceptional ability to inspire, motivate and engage her students.

Goodson is the second award winner this year in Virginia. Virginia Beach Middle School teacher, Kimberly Collins, was also surprised with a $25K award.

“I am thrilled to welcome another Milken Educator from Virginia, as this state holds a special place in my heart,” said Stephanie Bishop, vice president of the Milken Educator Awards and a 2001 Virginia Milken Educator. “Taylor Goodson’s dedication to increasing literacy, willingness to assist and mentor students and colleagues, and adaptability to meet student needs are just some of the characteristics that make her a model to follow. We welcome Taylor to our national Milken Educator Network and look forward to her contributions.”

The Milken Educator Awards is considered the "Oscars of Teaching." The Milken Educator Award is not a lifetime achievement honor. Recipients are awarded for their early to mid-career achievements and for the promise of what they will accomplish given the resources and opportunities inherent in the Award.

"Taylor makes a difference in the lives of her students every day and I can't think of a better way to celebrate Teacher Appreciation Week than to join her and her entire school community to celebrate this well-deserved recognition from the Milken Family Foundation," Virginia Superintendent of Public Instruction Jillian Balow said. "Taylor epitomizes all of the Virginia teachers we celebrate this week in her dedication to her students and in her commitment to academic excellence."

Oprah also shared her congratulations and thanks to this year’s recipients in a video message. U.S. Secretary of Education Dr. Miguel Cardona also said in a video message that Milken Educators “personify excellence in education” and “inspire leadership and motivate students to excel.”

Watch the full surprise below: