Skip to content

2020 Inclusive Practice Award/Paraeducator of the Year Award

2019 Winners ​
Special Education Team of IDEA, the Interior Distance Education of Alaska program of the Galena City School District. The team members are: Debbie Lockard, Leanne Grover, Crystal Ison, Shirley Kempski, Barb Laucius, and Merian Werth.
2019 Paraeducator Winner ​
Tesh Miller-Gray from Hoonah City School District.
2018 Winners ​
Ben Griese and Nicole Wagner
Chief Ivan Blunka School in New Stuyahok, Southwest Region School District
2017 Winners ​
Service High School Partners Club
2016 Winners ​
Nikiski Middle/High School Intensive Needs Team, 
2015 Winners
KeetGooshi Heen 
Elementary School in Sitka,   
2014 Winners
Monica Stockburger and Homer High School Intensive Needs Classroom staff

The Governor’s Council on Disabilities & Special Education has established an annual award to be given at the Annual State Special Education Conference each February. For the last 16 years, the Inclusive Practice Award has honored outstanding educators who work to ensure students with disabilities have the opportunity for an inclusive education with their peers as part of the general education curriculum and school community.  Whereas numerous educators deserve recognition for a multitude of reasons, the focus of this award is exclusively on exemplary inclusive practices. An additional award will be given specifically to a special education paraeducator that exemplifies best practices in supporting students in classrooms. 

Parents, students and school personnel are encouraged to nominate an outstanding educator or team, or paraeducator who demonstrate inclusive practices by completing the nomination form found on the Governor’s Council website, below, and returning it to the Governor's Council by 5:00 p.m. on Friday, January 3, 2020.

Nominees for the Inclusive Practice Award should be individuals or teams who are currently educators including (but not limited to) general education teachers, special education teachers, related service providers, administrators or other personnel. Nominees for the Paraeducator of the Year Award should be those working predominantly with students who receive special education services. Award winners are selected based on demonstration of the following criteria:

  • Involving parents as equal partners in their child’s education
  • Promoting inclusive practices that allow students with disabilities to be included within the classroom, with peers and in the school community
  • Modifying curricula or providing support services that enables access to the general curriculum, classroom or school community.

Download Nomination Form​, it should be submitted to Elena Markova by Friday, January 3, 2020. Please note: This document is not ADA compliant at this time. We are currently working to create a version to meet this requirement. If you need an ADA compliant form, please contact:

Email to
FAX to: (907) 269-8995
Mail to: Governor’s Council on Disabilities & Special Education
550 W 7th Ave. Suite 1230
Anchorage, Alaska 99501
Main: 907.269.8990
Toll Free: 1.888.269.8990
Fax: 907.269.8995    Questions: Phone (907) 269-8462

Elena Markova
Program Coordinator II

Governor’s Council on Disabilities & Special Education
550 West 7th Ave.  Suite 1230  I  Anchorage, AK 99501
Phone: 907-269-8462  I  Fax: 907-269-8995
Join us on Facebook!

Governor's Council on Disabilities and Special Education
3601 C Street, Suite 740 | Anchorage, AK 99503
Phone: (907) 269-5703 | Toll free: 1(888) 269-8990
Join us on Facebook!

​​​​​​ ​