Richland School District 88A is proud to announce Patricia Buckley, special education teacher, as the recipient of the 2020 Learning Disabilities Association of America “Sam Kirk Educator of the Year Award."
This award is given annually to an outstanding educator who has made significant contributions to the field of learning disabilities.
The award was presented to Buckley at the Learning Disabilities Association Conference in Orlando, Florida in February 2020.
As written in her nomination, “No matter where Patricia taught, she has made accommodations and provided the specialized instruction that is the hallmark of effective instruction for students with disabilities.
"As a full-time special educator since 1977, Patricia continues to have an amazing impact on her students and in the learning environment. In the Crest Hill, Illinois community where Patricia teaches, 1 in 5 students is an English Learner and 17% of students have an IEP.
"The students are racially diverse and 41% are identified as low income. Patricia welcomes all children and has proved to be an effective teacher for any age or grade.”
In a news release from Richland School District 88A, Buckley said the award was presented at the 57th international conference in Orlando, Florida.
"This prestigious award honors the significant contributions of Dr. Samuel A Kirk, a psychologist and educator who was a founding leader in the field of learning disabilities," Buckley said in the release.
"I have been fortunate to work with many amazing students and families in Illinois and Massachusetts, who have inspired me to be a life-long learner and active member in the field of learning disabilities.
"As a member of the LDA of Illinois, I have also had the pleasure to serve on the Board in order to assist children and adults on a statewide level."
In the release, Richland School District 88A Superintendent Joseph Simpkins said, “Patricia is one of the most dedicated professionals I have had the pleasure to work with during my 29 years in education. She is dedicated to the success of each and every student she works with and gives her all to make Richland a great school."
In the release, Kristen Bonie, Director of Student Services, said “Patricia cares deeply about the success of every student in her care, working tirelessly to support and advocate for them. It is awesome to see her recognized for her years of hard work, and I know her students will be excited to hear about her accolades as well."