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Arch Coal To Again Sponsor Its West Virginia Teacher Achievement Awards Program in 2006-2007 School Year
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Charleston, W.Va. (August 14, 2006) – The longest running, privately sponsored classroom teacher recognition program in West Virginia will continue, according to Arch Coal, Inc. Vice President of External Affairs John R. Snider.

The Arch Coal Teacher Achievement Awards program will provide 12 exceptional West Virginia classroom teachers with a $2,500 cash prize in 2007, Snider said. The Arch Coal program asks that the public nominate the teachers, while a blue-ribbon panel of classroom teachers serve as the program's judges.

"Not only does our program recognize these special teachers from all over the state," said Snider, "But the program receives welcome support from other organizations who we've asked to partner in this effort as well.

"Foremost among the program's supporters is the West Virginia Education Association (WVEA)," said Snider. "We are very appreciative that the West Virginia Foundation for the Improvement of Education, a foundation operated by WVEA, makes a $1,000 award to each recipient's school for use with at-risk students. We also receive very important support from the West Virginia Department of Education and the West Virginia Library Commission.

"Both the public and the teaching profession have supported this program for many years," Snider said. "Each year we receive hundreds of nominations from the public telling us who they believe the very best classroom teachers in the state are. We ask the nominees some very searching questions about their classrooms and their teaching philosophy. Finally, each application is reviewed and scored by peers – other teachers who most often are former recipients of the award."

Nomination forms will be available in schools and libraries across the state shortly after the start of the school year. Nominations also may be made on the Arch Coal Web site at www.archteacherawards.com.

Arch Coal is the nation's second largest coal producer. The company is listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: ACI) and maintains its corporate headquarters in St. Louis, Mo.