OKLAHOMA CITY – The Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence, a nonprofit organization that recognizes and encourages academic excellence in Oklahoma’s public schools, is seeking nominations for its 2020 Academic All-State Scholarships and Medal for Excellence Awards.
Scholarships and educator awards totaling $125,000 will be presented at the foundation’s 34th annual Academic Awards Banquet on May 16, 2020, at the Embassy Suites Conference Center in Norman. The event, which has been described as the “Academy Awards for public education in Oklahoma,” is attended by nearly 1,000 guests and is broadcast statewide on public television.
“We know that education is the best investment our society can make for the future,” said David L. Boren, founder and chairman of the Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence. “If we make all of the right policy decisions in every other area but fail to adequately educate the next generation, we will imperil the future of our society. By working together to give outstanding students and educators the recognition they deserve, we send a strong message to our state and to the nation that Oklahomans value academic excellence.”
Academic Awards nominations are being accepted through an online portal at ofe.org in the following categories:
1. Academic All-State, which honors 100 public high school seniors with a $1,000 merit-based scholarship. To qualify, students must meet at least one of the following requirements: a composite ACT score of at least 30; a combined SAT evidence-based reading & writing and math score of at least 1370; or be selected as a semi-finalist for a National Merit, National Achievement or National Hispanic Scholarship. Eligibility must be verified by the district superintendent or high school principal. Academic All-State nominations must be submitted by 5 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 5.
2. The Oklahoma Medal for Excellence in Elementary/Secondary Teaching, which honors two educators – a public school elementary teacher and a secondary teacher.
3. The Oklahoma Medal for Excellence in Elementary/Secondary Administration, which honors an exceptional public school administrator at the elementary or secondary level.
4. The Oklahoma Medal for Excellence in Teaching at a Regional University or Community College, which honors an innovative teacher at a public regional university or community college.
5. The Oklahoma Medal for Excellence in Teaching at a Research University, honoring an outstanding educator at a public research university.
Oklahoma Medal for Excellence honorees each receive a $5,000 cash award and a glass Roots and Wings sculpture. Anyone may nominate an educator for a Medal for Excellence Award. Nominees must be full-time employees of their public school or institution and have demonstrated excellence as an educator. All Medal for Excellence nominations must be submitted by 5 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 3.
Scholarship and award recipients are chosen by an independent selection committee, chaired by retired Tulsa attorney Teresa B. Adwan, and comprised of business, education and civic leaders, as well as former Academic All-Staters and Medal for Excellence winners. Since 1987, the Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence has awarded more than $4.8 million in academic awards and scholarships.
For more information, visit the foundation’s website at ofe.org or call (405) 236-0006.