‘Teamwork makes the dream work’

KTC teacher selected for Teacher of the Year award

Michael Spagnuolo

Members of the awards committee for the Michigan Council for Exceptional Children spend hours debating applicants for the Teacher of the Year award. From videos of support to written testimonials, it is evident that each applicant is well-deserving of praise, but Michael Spagnuolo stood out and was named their 2018 Teacher of the Year.

Spagnuolo currently serves as the KTC CORE Program Instructor, a specialized training program in partnership with the YMCA that helps equip students with special needs with skills to help them become employable. He also works as the program director for the summer employment program, also for students with special needs.

Each day, he uses the motto “teamwork makes the dream work,” to encourage his students and remind them to work together.

“Michigan has some of the greatest educators in the country, and I feel incredibly honored and humbled to be the 2018 Teacher of the Year,” Spagnuolo said.

Spagnuolo credits his accomplishments to those around him at Kent ISD, Kent Transition Center.

“None of the accomplishments I have worked on would have been possible without the dream or the team,” he said. “I am elated to work for an organization that empowers their staff to ensure every student in every classroom achieves every day.”

Reflecting on his award, Spagnuolo dedicates his award to all the exceptional educators in the state of Michigan.

“I consider my career path my calling,” he said. “Receiving this award reinforces the joy I receive from being an educator and having the ability to positively impact the youth.”

A 2017 graduate of Grand Valley State University and a lifelong teacher’s kid, Hannah Lentz has worked as a journalist in and outside the Grand Rapids area for more than five years. After serving as editor-in-chief at the GVSU student newspaper, Hannah interned at the Leelanau Enterprise where she learned a lot about community journalism. In addition to her work for School News Network, Hannah has worked as a freelance blogger in the furniture industry, focusing on design trends, and as a social media manager for World Medical Relief in Detroit. Read Hannah's full bio.

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