Area educator wins top honor for excellence in education

Marilyn Rippy a teacher at South Tama Elementary awarded at banquet

DES MOINES, IA (08/09/2017) (readMedia)-- Marilyn Rippy, a music teacher at South Tama Elementary in Tama, is a 2017 Excellence in Education Award runner-up. The award is sponsored by the Iowa State Education Association (ISEA). Rippy was chosen among a top field of educators-all nominated by colleagues, students, parents, and community members-because of the difference they make every day in the lives of Iowa's students.

"This award is truly about recognizing the educators who work hard on a daily basis and rarely get the recognition they so richly deserve," said Tammy Wawro, President of the ISEA. "The nominations we receive are a testament to the dedication and compassion Iowa educators have for their students and the communities in which they live. Clearly, Iowa educators go above and beyond to help shape and, in many cases, to help change the lives of the students they teach," Wawro added.

Marilyn's students love their music class and adore their teacher. Her music programs are anticipated by her students and families alike for their fun and creativity and she makes all of her students feel proud and welcome. Mentoring new teachers when professional advice is needed and assisting as a curriculum advisor for her school, Marilyn is also well respected among her colleagues. She is a model teacher for the school and a volunteer in her community striving to give her students new experiences, help her colleagues and be a good neighbor in her community.

"It is clear that Marilyn's creativity, passion and work all combine to make a tremendous impact in her classroom and beyond, and we applaud her achievement," said Wawro. "The Excellence in Education Award celebrates educators like Marilyn who are invested in the lives of their students and go beyond what is expected to make an exceptional experience for them," added Wawro.

Now in its 17th year, the Excellence in Education Award honors educators around the state who make a difference in the classroom. Nominations are solicited beginning in January through March.

Rippy received a $100 gift from the ISEA during an awards ceremony and banquet on Monday, July 31, at Prairie Meadows Convention Center in Altoona, courtesy of the ISEA.

The winner of the 2017 Excellence in Education Award is Kim Pelzer, a teacher at Tipton Elementary in Tipton. Pelzer received $1,000 courtesy of the ISEA. Other runners-up also honored included Doug Renkly, an art teacher in the Harlan Community School District in Harlan; Meredith Skala, a teacher at Hopewell Elementary in Bettendorf; and Consuelo Steel-Cherry, a para-educator at Roosevelt Middle School in Cedar Rapids. All runners-up received $100 courtesy of the ISEA.


The ISEA is a professional organization made up of educators and school employees who are dedicated to supporting and protecting a quality education for all Iowa students.