West Virginia Teacher of the Year nominees from every county were honored at a gala at the Embassy Suites Hotel on the evening of September 12, 2018.
Philip Dobbins, a 26-year veteran educator assigned to Clay County High School represented Clay County Schools. As part of this celebration, the West Virginia Teacher of the Year was announced by State Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Steven Paine.
Dobbins teaches Civics and Government classes at Clay County High School. He also teaches two advanced placement (AP) courses. His AP students boast one of the highest passing rates in the state on their AP exams. His AP Government and Politics course competes in the state We the People Competition. His students have won the state competition the last four years in a row and his teams have set state records at the national We the People Competition in Washington, D.C.
Dobbins began his teaching career in Clay County fresh out of Glenville State College in 1991. He brought with him a passion for teaching and learning along with great energy and enthusiasm. He has served as a mentor teacher and an athletic coach for Clay County Schools and our community. He earned his Masters of the Arts in Educational Leadership from Marshall University. Mr. Dobbins has also led professional learning sessions for teachers in Clay and across the state. In 2000, Mr. Dobbins became the assistant principal of Clay County Middle School and from 2003 he served with distinction as the principal of Clay County High School. But his calling to teach never diminished and he returned to classroom in 2009. Clay County Superintendent of Schools, Joe Paxton, stated that, “Mr. Dobbins is an extraordinary educator who represents the best of the teaching profession.”
The West Virginia’s Teacher of the Year program recognizes one teacher from each of the state’s 55 counties who represents excellence in the profession and dedication to students. The state Teacher of the Year is selected from among the county winners. The state Teacher of the Year is West Virginia’s nominee for the National Teacher of the Year. The program is designed to identify, recognize and promote excellent educators in elementary, middle and high schools. It is one of the oldest programs in the United States.
“Each of these teachers embrace high expectations, strive for excellence and put students at the center of all they do,” according to State Superintendent of Schools Steve Paine. A Raleigh County elementary school teacher, Jada Reeves, was named the 2019 West Virginia Teacher of the Year. Reeves teaches fifth grade at Bradley Elementary School in Mt. Hope, and serves on multiple school committees as well as volunteers in local youth sports.