Sarah Adamson–Mair was still shaking with nervous energy an hour after learning that she was one of eight educators in the running for Virginia Department of Education Teacher of the Year.
“I’m very surprised,” she said. “Surprised and humbled.”
Adamson–Mair, a kindergarten teacher at Lewis and Clark Elementary School in Caroline County, learned of her selection as the Region Three winner Monday morning at the end of a schoolwide assembly.
VDOE Region Three includes Fredericksburg and Stafford, Spotsylvania, Caroline and King George counties, as well as 12 other counties and cities. There are seven other regions in the state.
“We’re so very proud,” said School Board Chair Nancy Carson. “If you grew up in one of [Adamson–Mair’s] classes, you’d be inspired to be a teacher.”
Carson and fellow School Board members learned the news at the same time as Adamson–Mair. They did not know why they had been invited to the assembly at Lewis and Clark until CCPS Deputy Superintendent Sarah Calveric made the announcement, which she wove into a skit about improper cellphone use during class.
“It was a very well-kept secret,” Carson said.
Adamson–Mair has been a teacher for 14 years. This is her fourth year teaching in Caroline—she previously taught in Stafford and Spotsylvania County Public Schools.
Of her kindergartners, she said, “I just love them. They’re so loving and sweet and so excited to learn.”
Besides her students, fellow teachers keep her inspired to stay in the profession.
“We all work so hard and we care about the kids so much,” she said.
Adamson–Mair called the Lewis and Clark administration and the CCPS central office the “best she’s ever worked with.”
“It’s been a great experience here,” she said.
Calveric said CCPS is “elated” to have Adamson–Mair represent Caroline.
“Her skill set, knowledge and expertise really set the bar,” she said. “She’s a tremendous advocate for our students.”
On Monday, Adamson-Mair and the seven other regional winners will interview with VDOE representatives in Richmond. The winner of the state Teacher of the Year award will be announced that evening.