The Edwin Parr Award recipient for the Central Alberta region is Emily Wilson, a grade 3 teacher at Carstairs Elementary School.

Wilson was one of the seven Central Alberta school division nominees who were taken into consideration for the prize.

From 1956 to 1962, Edwin Parr held the position of President at the Alberta School Trustees’ Association (now Alberta School Boards Association). In tribute to his legacy and his dedication to the teaching profession, the Alberta School Trustees’ Association created the Edwin Parr Teacher Award in 1964. Recognizing excellence in first-year teachers, these awards have been given for nearly six decades.

Wilson will be honoured with other provincial recipients in Edmonton later this year.

“We are incredibly proud of Emily. She represents a very strong contingent of first-year teachers in Chinook’s Edge School Division, and she is truly exceptional” said Kurt Sacher, Superintendent, of Chinook’s Edge School Division. “To have been selected in Zone 4 is a significant comment about Emily’s abilities and the difference she is already making for our students.”

Wilson said when her name was announced as the winner, she was shocked.

“To listen to the other nominees speak, all of the first-year teachers, I could see how each was so deserving of this award. I just feel blessed to be among them,” said Wilson.

This year, in her class, she has been teaching 28 students.

"It's been great to build relationships with them and see them grow and flourish and be the unique and brilliant kids they are."

Wilson shared that her remarks on Monday evening included a reflection on her journey to becoming a teacher. She noted that having both parents as teachers had a significant impact on her decision.

“I thank both of my parents for that example,” said Wilson. “And my mom is still a teacher who is dedicated to her work and is beloved by staff and students. Having my Mom as an example and mentor has been inspirational for me.”

Wilson finished off by thanking everybody who has helped her along her path as a first-year teacher.

"Behind every good teacher is an amazing community. I'm just grateful to be here."

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