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Rowan County educator named KEA Teacher of the Year, Appalachian Teacher of the Year

Allison Slone

Rowan County educator Allison Slone has been named Kentucky Education Association Teacher of the Year.

Slone teaches special education at Rowan County Senior High School and has taught in the district for 24 years. She is also President of the Rowan County Education Association and leads the Appalachia Educators Alliance. She also started the Facebook group, Kentucky Teachers in the Know, which supplies over 28,000 teachers with resources and information.

She said the rising pressure of being a teacher without adequate compensation is what turns most people away from the profession.

“I think we’ve been taken for granted for so long because teachers are just someone that’s been there. There’s always been teachers. So, you know, for as long as we can remember there have been people in the classroom teaching our children and we’ve just taken that for granted, that that would continue to happen, and by taking that for granted we’ve created a problem,” said Slone.

Slone said she’s worked to make sure teachers receive the support they need to guide the next generation.

“I do all these things so that I can make sure that teachers see that they can make a difference outside the classroom just as much as they do in the classroom, if that’s something they’re interested in. And I want to encourage other teachers to be leaders and you can be a leader without necessarily being an administrator and having those certifications, so that’s kind of my big goal,” said Slone.

Officials said Slone’s commitment to public education is what made her the standout choice for the award. Along with KEA Teacher of the Year, Slone has been awarded Appalachian Teacher of the Year by Shaping Our Appalachian Region.

Slone said she wants to use her influence to continue supporting teachers and building leadership.