Katie Blum file photo (copy)

Katie Blum, the Gwinnett County Public Schools’ 2021 Teacher of the Year, was named runner-up for the 2023 Georgia Teacher of the Year title at an event on April 30.

Katie Blum, the Gwinnett County Public Schools’ 2021 Teacher of the Year, was named runner-up for the 2023 Georgia Teacher of the Year title at an event on April 30.

Blum, a second-grade teacher at Sugar Hill Elementary School, was one of 10 finalists for the state’s top teaching honor.

“I have said it before, and I will continue to say it, my success throughout this (Teacher of the Year) adventure does not simply just reflect my own accomplishments or myself,” Blum said of finishing runner-up for the state’s top honor. “It truly reflects the collaboration from my colleagues, leadership at my school and within GCPS, resources made available to my students and classroom, and the overall teamwork and dedication to always do what’s best for students.”

Blum earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology and a master’s degree in teacher education, both from the University of Tennessee. She holds a specialist’s degree in teacher leadership from Georgia College and State University.

She has been a teacher in Gwinnett since 2016. In addition to teaching second grade, she is a co-leader of the new Teacher Mentoring Program at Sugar Hill Elementary and a mentor to second-year teachers.

That support for peers and dedication to mentorship is key to Blum’s education philosophy, she said.

“Education is such a collaborative effort, and we all shine brighter when we ALL work together,” Blum said. “I believe that my success and this amazing award is a prime example of that collaboration.”

Michael Kobito, an AP Music Theory teacher and high school band director at Woodland High School in the Bartow County School System, is the 2023 Georgia Teacher of the Year. Mr. He will serve as an ambassador for the teaching profession in Georgia and will compete for the National Teacher of the Year title.

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