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The Pittsburgh Pirates, Pirates Charities, Chevron and The Grable Foundation recognize 'All Star' teachers in virtual celebrations

May 8, 2020

In conjunction with Teacher Appreciation Week, the Pittsburgh Pirates, Pirates Charities, Chevron and The Grable Foundation are teaming up this week with the Allegheny Intermediate Unit and Intermediate Unit One, to recognize 18 outstanding teachers from southwestern Pennsylvania and northern West Virginia. Throughout the week representatives from the partnering organizations,

In conjunction with Teacher Appreciation Week, the Pittsburgh Pirates, Pirates Charities, Chevron and The Grable Foundation are teaming up this week with the Allegheny Intermediate Unit and Intermediate Unit One, to recognize 18 outstanding teachers from southwestern Pennsylvania and northern West Virginia. Throughout the week representatives from the partnering organizations, including Pirates President Travis Williams and pitcher Geoff Hartlieb, are joining online meetings to surprise local teachers with $1,000 classroom grants.

The “All-Star Teachers” Program recognizes area educators for their exceptional classroom efforts and positive impact on Pre-K to 12th-grade students. This recognition is dedicated to honoring teachers who are making a significant difference in the lives of students across the region by providing engaging instruction and curriculum, encouraging lifelong learning, and inspiring a passion for education beyond the classroom.

This past offseason, teachers were nominated through Pirates.com for a chance to be named an All-Star Teacher. Nominations were asked to address ways that teachers demonstrated excellence in the following categories: innovative, outstanding, worldly and academic. In addition to the $1,000 classroom grant, each teacher is receiving a $100 gift card for personal use, a certificate to display in their classroom, and an invitation to be recognized for their achievement during an on-field pregame ceremony at a future Pirates game.

The surprise celebration would normally take place at each winning teacher’s respective school, but due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, the Pirates and their partners worked to coordinate online meetings to surprise each teacher and celebrate their incredible accomplishments. Pirates Charities coordinated with school administrators to invite winning teachers to participate in online calls under the auspices of a formal meeting. When the teacher joined the online meeting, members of the committee, including Williams, Hartlieb, the Pirate Parrot and Pirates in-game Host Joe Klimchak, participated to surprise them with the news of their award. Two winners were previously recognized in January during surprise school assembly visits during the 2020 Pirates Charities CARE-avan.

A committee comprised of members of the contributing organizations chose the 18 winning teachers from more than 200 nominees. Six winners were selected from each of three categories that included PreK/Elementary, Middle School and High School. Teachers in Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, Butler, Fayette, Greene, Washington and Westmoreland counties in Pennsylvania and Brooke, Hancock, Ohio and Marshall Counties in West Virginia were eligible to be nominated.