Wednesday, Jun 19, 2019

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Krista Trent accepts the Milken Educator Award.

Krista Trent accepts the Milken Educator Award.

Photo courtesy of: Milken Educator Awards

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OHIO alumna surprised with $25,000 Milken Educator Award

Ohio University alumna Krista Trent has been named the state of Ohio’s only Milken Educator this year and was surprised with a $25,000 unrestricted reward during a school assembly on Oct. 18.  

Before that day, Thornville Elementary School was told that the State Superintendent of Public Instruction Paolo DeMaria was visiting to commend the school on its Positivity Project. That was true — but they had more in store for the fourth-grade math teacher. They named her a Milken Educator — what some refer to as the “Oscars of teaching.” 

The Milken Educator Awards provide public recognition and individual financial rewards to elementary and secondary school teachers, principals and specialists from around the country who are furthering excellence in education.

"I am thrilled to honor Krista," said DeMaria. "She exemplifies what it means to be an amazing teacher — she inspires hope, ignites imagination and instills in her students a love of learning that will last forever."

Milken Educator Awards Senior Vice President Dr. Jane Foley made the surprise announcement in front of a schoolwide assembly of faculty, students and visiting dignitaries. 

“Humor and hard work are paying dividends in Krista Trent’s classroom,” Foley noted. “Krista’s unwavering commitment to nurturing the love of learning in every student, all the while achieving top marks, is inspiring.”

Trent was one of up to 40 honorees nationwide to receive the prestigious recognition for the 2018-19 season. In addition to representing Ohio this year, she is the first recipient from the Northern Local School District in the Awards' 30-year history. The district is located in Perry County and Thornville is about 25 miles west of Zanesville. 

"If you can't tell from my tears, I was not expecting this," Trent told her students and colleagues at the assembly. "Never in a million years did I think my name was going to be the one on this shiny envelope. ... I am beyond humbled and very proud of all of my students."

The fourth-grade teacher uses her passion for teaching, high expectations and a keen sense of humor to push her students to make great gains in her class. She focuses on building skills, not raising test scores, but naturally her student outcomes shine: Her classes score at the top of the Northern Local School District on state and value-added assessments. 

Trent is a 2007 Ohio University graduate. She earned a bachelor of science degree in middle childhood education with concentrations in language arts and math in the Gladys W. and David H. Patton College of Education. She also holds a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from Ohio Dominican University. 

“Ohio University strives to not only attract the best and brightest students, but to build on that and provide students with the necessary skills to be catalysts for change in their areas of expertise,” said OHIO President M. Duane Nellis. “Krista is changing the lives of her students, and the University could not be more proud.” 

OHIO Senior Lecturer Perianne Bates had Trent in her class regarding instructional adaptations for learners with exceptionalities and diverse needs. Bates said as a student, Trent “demonstrated a sincere commitment to educating all learners.”

“Krista was an enthusiastic and active teacher-candidate who worked well with others to provide the best evidence-based strategies for her learners,” Bates added. “It was a privilege working with Krista and I’m thrilled to see her recognized with this award.”

Frans Doppen, chair of teacher education in the Patton College, said Trent serves as a “true model for middle-level educators across and beyond the state.” 

For more information about the Milken Educator Award and Krista Trent, visit https://bit.ly/2Czqi72. To find out more about the Patton College of Education, see https://www.ohio.edu/education/.