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Meadowlark Teacher Named Utah Teacher of the Year

Larry Madden, John Arthur, and Sydnee Dickson

State Superintendent of Public Instruction Sydnee Dickson today named John Arthur, a sixth-grade teacher at Salt Lake City’s Meadowlark Elementary School as the 2021 Utah Teacher of the Year. Ms. Dickson surprised Mr. Arthur this morning by visiting his classroom and speaking to his students, who were attending class via Zoom.

Mr. Arthur was presented with a check for $10,000 and will compete with his state fellow teachers of the year in a national competition. He will participate in several state and national leadership opportunities.

A committee with representatives from the Utah State Board of Education, the Utah State Charter School Board, parents, teachers, principals, and 2020 Utah Teacher of the Year Lauren E. Merkley selected Mr. Arthur from among local teachers of the year for the honor. 

“He is not a normal teacher,” wrote Felicia Raybourne, the mother of one of Mr. Arthur’s former pupils. “He is there to help kids through life. He makes sure his students understand everything they are learning no matter how much extra time it takes. Mr. Arthur took my daughter to chess and debate tournaments, opportunities I never thought she’d have. She also learned to take school seriously, and now she enjoys school so much.”

“John works tirelessly to improve his teaching craft,” wrote Meadowlark Assistant Principal Wayne Culley. “He tutors students before and after school no matter which grade or school they are enrolled in. He helps future students in younger grades, students from Northwest (Middle School), and the high schools. Students and families know his generosity, love, and dedication. He believes in all students no matter their past or current struggles.”