PEORIA (WEEK) — For Marricea Page, running a fourth-grade classroom during a pandemic has presented new sets of challenges. Doing it all as a decorated educator, though, is just another day at the office.
Page has taught at Dr. Maude A. Sanders Primary School in Peoria since 2011. During that time, she has tackled the same challenges many of her colleagues nationwide have dealt with. But that hasn't stopped her from showing what it takes to make a difference in students' lives.
Page's resume is a strong testament to her capabilities. It includes honors like the Teacher of the Year for the 20-county West Central Region, and recipient of the PPS Donald M. Phares Classroom Teacher of the Year in August.
Now, Page has been nominated for 2021 Illinois Teacher of the Year, the state's highest honor for educators.
"I didn't imagine that I'd be winning the district award, let alone the regional state award," says Page.
"I feel like what I do is what all teachers do in our district. We have amazing teachers, and we do what we feel is best for our students, we do what we feel is best for our colleagues."
The prospect of winning Illinois Teacher of the Year is not even the most important part. For Page, getting recognition on any level is its own reward.
"Even if I don't win, this has still been an amazing, amazing honor to have, just at the district level and at the regional level," she adds.
The Illinois State Teacher of the Year award will be announced during a virtual board meeting Oct. 21.