|Arch Coal Honors 12 Outstanding West Virginia Teachers|
Charleston, W.Va. (March 15, 2005) - Prestigious Arch Coal Teacher Achievement Awards were given to 12 outstanding classroom teachers from around the state today at a ceremony at the Cultural Center at the state Capitol.
Arch Coal President and Chief Executive Officer Steven F. Leer, accompanied by Gov. Joe Manchin, First Lady Gayle Manchin, Secretary of Arts and Education Kay Goodwin, State Superintendent of Schools David Stewart, and West Virginia Education Association (WVEA) President Tom Lange presented awards to:
Each teacher received a personal, unrestricted cash award of $2,500 from Arch Coal. In addition, the West Virginia Foundation for Improvement of Education (WVFIE) added a $1,000 grant to each recipient's school for use with at-risk students.
"Classroom teachers have incredible responsibility," said Leer. "West Virginia is fortunate to have so many talented, dedicated teachers, who we entrust with our children - to mentor, inspire and teach. Arch Coal counts on these teachers and their many colleagues across the state to instill a lifelong love of learning in our youth."
"West Virginia's educators are the foundation of our future, fostering the growth and development of our state's brightest minds," the Governor said. "The Mountain State is blessed to have some of the most talented and dedicated educational professionals in the nation. We appreciate their important contributions in the classroom, and applaud Arch Coal's commitment to quality education throughout West Virginia and the region."
"The promise of a brighter future for West Virginia begins in the classroom," said Goodwin. "With gifted people like these teachers educating our children, that future looks very bright indeed."
"The level of dedication and talent West Virginia teachers possess continues to amaze me," said Stewart. "The educators honored by the Arch Coal Awards are true examples of excellence!"
"The WVEA and its foundation, the West Virginia Foundation for the Improvement of Education (WVFIE), is pleased to be a partner with Arch Coal as it recognizes some of the fine teachers that work throughout our state," said Lange. "Teachers are rarely honored for the hard work and long hours they put into providing a high quality education for the students of our state. These teachers exemplify the spirit and dedication of thousands of their peers throughout the state."
"Our members are pleased that WVFIE is able to contribute $1,000 to each of the winner's schools so that the money might be used to help educate at-risk students," continued Lange.
"These 12 superior teachers demonstrate excellence in their classrooms every day," said John R. Snider, vice president, Arch Coal's external affairs, eastern region.
The public made more than 400 teacher nominations this year. A blue ribbon panel of other teachers judged the applicants. "There were so many excellent applicants, our judges had a very difficult time choosing the recipients," said Snider.
The Arch Coal Teacher Achievement Awards program is the longest-running, privately sponsored teacher recognition program in West Virginia. Arch Coal had support from the West Virginia Department of Education, the West Virginia Education Association, and Speedway in promoting the program.
Arch Coal is the nation's second largest coal producer and mines clean-burning, low-sulfur coal exclusively. 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.
WVEA created the WVFIE foundation in 1993 to assist in securing resources to aid in the education of at-risk students. To date, WVFIE has funded 172 grants for more than $147,000.
Information about each of the 12 recipients is posted on the Arch Coal Web site: http://www.archcoal.com/community/teacherawards_2005.aspx.