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The Oscars of Teaching 

Bend High teacher is the only Oregonian to win the $25,000 Milken Educator Award this year

MILKEN FAMILY FOUNDATION
  • Milken Family Foundation

Out of 44 recipients of the prestigious Milken Educator Award this year, only one was from Oregon—and she happens to be a teacher at Bend High School. Unaware she was to be honored, representatives from the Milken Foundation presented Andria Lindsey with the award in a surprise all-school assembly Tuesday morning. As she stood with her colleagues, surrounded by students, Lindsey was visibly taken aback when she was presented with a gift check of $25,000 for her exemplary work as a math teacher since 2005.

"Andria Lindsey makes daunting subjects approachable, difficult problems solvable and fresh ways of thinking commonplace for her students with a flexibility and resourcefulness that's remarkable," said Dr. Jane Foley, senior vice president of the Milken Family Foundation. "By helping students find the joy in math, Lindsey not only primes her students for higher education success but also sets them on a trajectory in life where they can soar anywhere that their agile minds can imagine."

Bend-La Pine Superintendent Shay Mikalson echoed the statement, saying, "Many of her former students return to share their post-secondary and college successes with her – and attribute much of their preparedness to her."

Most noteworthy, Lindsey is regarded as placing emphasis on relationship building with students while making math more approachable and fun. She serves as the math department head, as well as a mentor, teacher coach, International Baccalaureate Diploma Coordinator, Advancement Via Individual Determination trainer, and a member of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics. Lindsey established Bend High's math lab to support students, as well as a middle school tutoring program that connects high school students with middle school students.

Lauded for making complex subjects such as IB Calculus approachable, Bend High School Principal Christopher Reese said, "Her number one priority is to create a classroom climate that is warm, inviting, safe and secure and that is built on trust. She is an asset to education and an absolutely phenomenal teacher."

Oregon joined the program in 1990. Lindsey is the 79th recipient of the award, as part of a network of more than 2,600 K-12 educators from across the country. She will attend an awards ceremony and forum with all national recipients in Washington, D.C., early next year and hear from state and federal officials about maximizing their leadership roles to advance educator effectiveness.

According to information on its website, the Milken Educator Awards target "early-to-mid career education professionals," offering them $25,000 in "unrestricted awards." Past recipients have used their awards to establish scholarships, continue their education, go on dream trips and even adopt children.


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