Mt. Adams' Michael Clinton is our 2018-2019 Regional Teacher of the Year!
Michael Clinton, a science teacher at the Mt. Adams School District’s White Swan High School, has been selected as the Educational Service District 105 Regional Teacher of the Year for 2018-2019.
As the Regional Teacher of the Year, Clinton will serve as one of nine candidates statewide for the title of 2018 Washington State Teacher of the Year, which will be announced on Monday, Sept. 10, at Seattle Center’s Museum of Pop Culture.
Clinton began his teaching career at White Swan High School in 2012. He is known for his focus and promotion of instructional methods and academic activities that emphasize inquiry-based learning and successful goal-setting skills for his high school’s students.
The teacher has enhanced the biology program at White Swan by developing an articulation agreement with Heritage Univeristy in which students at the high school can earn college credit in biology and chemistry through his courses. The new Regional Teacher of the Year earned his own B.A. in teaching 5th-12th grade science through Heritage in 2012.
Since 2013, Clinton has also taken White Swan students to tribal lands along the Columbia River as part of Heritage University’s “People of the Big River” field class. The activity gives those youths a first-hand look at issues facing tribes there such as fish migration, logging, and endangered species, and helps the students make connections between those tribes and the issues of the Yakama Nation in their own home area.
In addition to also teaching an outdoor science class and physics, Clinton instructs the high school’s Freshman Seminar class that he helped develop with other colleagues at the school. Freshman Seminar was introduced at White Swan during 2016-2017 and was created through the assistance of brainstorming by Clinton in response to the measurements around the Every Student Succeeds Act. This course at the school is designed to help 9th graders become successful high school students by helping them read and write effectively, and to help them set academic and life goals as part of their High School and Beyond Plan. With the support of Freshman Seminar, 79% of White Swan’s 9th graders passed all of their classes during the second trimester in this past school year – up from 62% in 2016-2017 and from 58% in 2015-2016.
Among the teacher’s extracurricular passions is his role as advisor of the school’s Knowledge Bowl team.
This is the second consecutive year that the ESD 105 Regional Teacher of the Year title has been awarded to an educator in the Mt. Adams School District. Last year’s award went to Jennifer Tenney, a 9th grade algebra instructor and 7th-12th grade math coach in the school district.
Clinton was one of six area teachers who were considered this year’s ESD 105 Regional Teacher of the Year. Other teachers who were nominated and who completed application materials for the award were: 5th grade teacher Casceila Miller of Thorp Elementary School; English language arts and leadership teacher Madeleine LaFramboise-Funk of East Valley Central Middle School; elementary special education teacher Michelle Palmer of the Educational Service District 105 Newbridge Learning Academy; 6th grade special education teacher Jessica Phillips of the Yakima School District’s Wilson Middle School; and 1st grade teacher Shannon Kimball of Wahluke’s Saddle Mountain Elementary School.