Lee's Summit Journal

LS High School teacher Blake Little is 1 of 6 KC Regional Teachers of the Year

Blake Little
Blake Little

Blake Little is a regional Teacher of the Year

Lee’s Summit High School history teacher Blake Little is one of six Kansas City Regional Teachers of the Year, which keeps him in the running for Missouri Teacher of the Year honors for 2019-20.

The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education conducts the Missouri Teacher of the Year program, which will announce the statewide winner in August.

Heidi Newlon, who is with the Regional Professional Development Center, had this to say about Little: “The pool of nominees was rich with stories of those making a difference in our schools each day. Your nomination, however, rose to the top as an individual who carries a passion for teaching, a dedication to the profession, and a drive to ensure all students achieve success. Thank you for your service to our students.”

Little, who teaches history at Lee’s Summit High School and coaches basketball, has been with the school district for 17 years. He previously taught at Lee’s Summit West High School.

The other regional honorees and their districts: Michelle Sumler, Belton; Maria Derner, Harrisonville; Cindy Long, Grandview; Deb Caywood, Liberty; and Jennifer Spiegel, North Kansas City.

Kauffman grant aids work force initiative

The Lee’s Summit School District has received $79,000 from the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation to support its efforts to increase the number of graduates who leave high school ready for “learning, work and life in the Kansas City region.”

“This work will contribute to our mission of creating solutions that empower people to be successful,” foundation President Wendy Guillies wrote in a letter to the district.

During the application process, the district said, Superintendent Dennis Carpenter and school board member Jacqueline Clark attended an instructional session with other local administrators and board members who are committed to “reimagining the high school experience” and enhancing the regional work force.

Immunizations offered

The Lee’s Summit School District wants families to know that the Jackson County Health Department is offering free or low-cost vaccinations that students will need before classes resume in August. Most insurance plans are accepted, and there is no co-pay.

To schedule an appointment, call 816-404-6416. Patrons also can fill our registration forms before their appointments at www.jacohd.org/clinic.

The health department also is working with the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office to host a “Back to School” Bash for high school and middle school students to receive immunizations from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Aug. 10 at Silverstein Eye Centers Arena, 19100 E. Valley View Parkway in Independence. People are encouraged to bring their insurance cards.