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Annual Arch Coal Teacher Recognition Program Gets Boost in West Virginia; WFIE Earmarks $10,000 for Recipients' Schools

September 5, 2002 at 12:18 AM EDT

Annual Arch Coal Teacher Recognition Program Gets Boost in West Virginia; WFIE Earmarks $10,000 for Recipients’ Schools

Charleston, W.Va. (Sept. 5, 2002) - Arch Coal, Inc. will again honor 10 excellent West Virginia teachers with statewide recognition and an unrestricted $2,500 award, according to John R. Snider, vice president of Eastern public affairs for the company.

The Arch Coal Teacher Achievement Awards program - adopted by Arch Coal from Ashland Inc. six years ago - has been in continuous operation for more than 15 years. It is the longest running, privately sponsored teacher awards program in the state.

This year, for the first time in the history of the awards, the West Virginia Foundation for the Improvement of Education (WFIE) is providing a $1,000 award to the school of each recipient, according to Tom Lange, president of the foundation. WFIE, a non-profit organization for at-risk students, was founded by the West Virginia Education Association in 1993.

"This is an excellent teacher recognition program and we are delighted to be part of it," said Lange. "We are proud to join Arch Coal in honoring these great teachers and the schools that encourage and support teaching excellence."

WFIE will present the grants to the faculty senate in honor of the recipient at each teacher's school, where the funds will be designated for use with at-risk students, said Lange.

"We think the donation to the school is a terrific complement to the 2002-2003 teacher awards," said Snider. "We're grateful for the strong support of the West Virginia Education Association, and now the West Virginia Foundation for the Improvement of Education."

The Arch Coal teacher recognition program is unique because it features public nomination and peer selection. After all applications are received, a blue-ribbon panel of experienced educators, including some who have previously won the Arch Coal award, gather to select 10 recipients from in-depth submissions provided by the nominated teachers.

Nomination forms are now available in schools throughout West Virginia and in Speedway locations. The public also may nominate online at: Nominations close Dec. 1, 2002. It is anticipated the awards ceremony will be held in mid-March, 2003.

About WFIE

The West Virginia Foundation for the Improvement of Education is an independent tax-exempt foundation dedicated to securing financial resources and using them effectively in responding to the education needs of at-risk children. WFIE is a separate, independent foundation supported in large part by donations from members of the West Virginia Education Association. The foundation also receives support from corporations and other individuals. Last year WVFIE awarded 11 grants of $500 each and four grants of $5,000 each.

About Arch Coal Inc.

Arch Coal is the nation's second largest coal producer. Approximately 2,000 people are employed at Arch's operations in West Virginia. The company is listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: ACI) and maintains its corporate headquarters in St. Louis, Mo.