By Alfonso De Torres Núñez

Christine Hutchins, a teacher of Chinese at St. Francis School in Louisville, is the 2017 recipient of the Kentucky World Language Association’s (KWLA) Outstanding Teacher Award. She received the award Sept. 23 at the KWLA annual conference in Louisville.

Christine Hutchins

Christine Hutchins

Hutchins has taught Chinese and Spanish for 16 years.  She first studied Spanish in both Madrid and in Quito, Ecuador. She won a scholarship to study Chinese full-time for one year in Taipei, Taiwan, at the Taiwan Normal University Teacher’s College Mandarin Training Center.

Hutchins completed her undergraduate work at Marshall University in Huntington, W.Va., and a master’s in Asian studies from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She earned her teaching credentials for both Chinese and Spanish from Northern Kentucky University. Hutchins has presented several times at KWLA. She began her teaching career at DuPont Manual High School (Jefferson County), currently teaches all levels of Chinese as well as Spanish 1 at St. Francis, has taught Chinese at Bellarmine University for six years and also is a Chinese course content developer for KET.

Five other educators representing Kentucky Chapters of professional language organizations also were recognized:

  • Ghadir Zannoun, assistant professor of Arabic and Islamic studies at the University of Kentucky, Outstanding Arabic Teacher.
  • Julie Human, assistant professor of French & Francophone studies and director of introductory French at the University of Kentucky, Outstanding French Teacher.
  • Lucas Gravitt, German teacher at Scott County High School, Outstanding German Teacher.
  • Madeline Griffitt, French teacher at Eisenhower Elementary School (Jefferson County), Outstanding National Network for Early Language Learning Teacher.
  • Lisa Garner, Spanish teacher at Apollo High School (Daviess County), Outstanding Spanish Teacher.

Hutchins received the Outstanding Chinese Teacher award. She will represent Kentucky world languages teachers at the regional conference in March, where she will be eligible for the regional Teacher of the Year award. Should she win the award, she would advance to the national level, where she would compete for the National World Languages Teacher of the Year award, given by the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages.

Three others also received awards from the KWLA:

Mark Leet

Mark Leet

  • Mark Leet, Owingsville Elementary School (Bath County), Outstanding Administrator.
  • Michelle Martin-Sullivan, Floyd Central High School (Floyd County), Outstanding New Teacher.
  • Michael D. Dailey

    Michael D. Dailey

    Michael D. Dailey, associate director for federal, state and magnet programs for Fayette County Public Schools, Amici Linguarum.

  • Ted Fiedler, professor of German studies at the University of Kentucky and director of its Max Kade German House and Cultural Center, Lifetime Achievement Award.