Education

Summersville Elementary School’s Cook Receives Arch Coal Teacher Achievement Award

Charleston, W. Va. (March 28, 2013) – Kimberly Cook’s love for teaching stems from a devotion to learning and a desire to pass that passion along to her students. “I want my eagerness to bubble up and spill over, creating a passion for learning in every student,” she said.  

“What other career has more potential to make an impact on society than teaching?” asked Cook. “We help develop good character traits daily as we teach and display high moral and academic expectations. As students learn, they gain confidence in their academic abilities and in their ability to improve society. Like all teachers, I can remember the teachers who inspired me along the way. I want to be that teacher!”  

As a result of her desire to inspire her students, Cook received statewide recognition today. She was one of only 12 teachers to receive a 2013 Arch Coal Teacher Achievement Award. John W. Eaves, Arch Coal’s president and chief executive officer, made the announcement during a ceremony at the Clay Center in Charleston. He was accompanied by West Virginia Education Association (WVEA) President Dale Lee. This is the 25th year the awards have been presented in West Virginia, and it is the longest-running privately funded teacher recognition program in the state.  

“Arch Coal is honored to recognize all 12 West Virginia winners of this year’s Arch Coal Teacher Achievement Awards,” Eaves said. “Educators are the foundation of a strong, successful state, and we’re proud to have supported a generation of great teachers with this longstanding award.”  

Cook teaches fifth-grade students at Summersville Elementary School in Summersville. She has 11 years of teaching experience. “I want my classroom lessons to simulate the real world and to look alive with student engagement,” Cook said. “I carefully plan the teamwork to ensure individual learning and that each child knows his or her role and how to contribute to the group. Cooperative work and individual learning go hand in hand. Our hands-on classroom addresses all individual learning styles and educational levels.”  

“Kimberly Cook is a consummate professional who sets a wonderful example for her students and her colleagues,” said Susan Barrett, Nicholas County school improvement coordinator. “As a teacher, she is knowledgeable, she is hard-working, and she has demonstrated a commitment to expanding her own understanding of the content she teaches. She projects a calm acceptance of even the most difficult teaching situations, a trait that sets her apart.”  

Cook earned a bachelor of arts degree in kindergarten through eighth-grade elementary education and a bachelor of arts degree with a math specialization in fifth- through eighth-grade from Fairmont State College. She also holds a master’s degree as a reading specialist for kindergarten through 12th grade from West Virginia University, and she is pursuing a degree in curriculum and instruction. Cook is a Personal Learning Community facilitator at her school, and she is working on an elementary math specialization through a Math Science Partnership grant at Regional Education Service Agency IV. She is involved with the Boy Scouts of America, serving as both a Cub Master and a den leader. Her scout troops routinely work on community conservation activities and other charitable service projects.  

Each Teacher Achievement Award recipient receives a distinctive trophy, a classroom plaque and a $3,500 personal cash award. The West Virginia Foundation for the Improvement of Education, a foundation of WVEA, makes a $1,000 award to each recipient’s school for use with at-risk students. Nominations of the teachers are made by the public, and selection is made by a blue-ribbon panel of the teachers’ peers, all former recipients of the Arch Coal award.  

The West Virginia Department of Education, the West Virginia Education Association and the West Virginia Library Commission are longstanding supporters of the program.  

The Arch Coal Foundation also supports teacher-recognition or grants programs in Wyoming, Utah and Colorado, as well as a number of other education-related causes.  

Information about each of today’s 12 recipients, as well as past recipients, is posted at archteacherawards.com.  

St. Louis-based Arch Coal, Inc. (NYSE:ACI) is one of the world’s top coal producers for the global steel and power generation industries, serving customers in 25 countries on five continents. Its network of mining complexes is the most diversified in the United States, spanning every major coal basin in the nation. In West Virginia, Arch Coal subsidiaries employ about 1,800 people. Arch Coal and the Arch Coal Foundation have a long history of supporting educational and community causes in West Virginia. For more information, visit archcoal.com.