Tennessee Education Association

Great Public Schools for All Students

            

Distinguished Educator Award Program (DEAP)

About the Program:

The Distinguished Educator Award Program (DEAP), a TEA tradition since 1982, honors public education professionals who inspire students, parents, colleagues, and the community through their talents, leadership, and community service.

Award Eligibility:

All nominees must be members of the Tennessee Education Association who have not previously received a DEAP Award in the category for which they are nominated.

Awards will be presented to educators who demonstrate qualities that distinguish themselves within the education profession as demonstrated through the online application process.  Applications will be scored using a rubric that can be found with the online application.

Application Procedure:

Applications may be downloaded from the website and submitted on behalf of a member by a local association, an individual member, a parent, or a student.

Local associations are encouraged to conduct award competition at the building and/or local level.  Visibility of local applicants and the finalist could be promoted through cooperation with civic groups, an awards luncheon/banquet, media publicity, etc.  A suggested time for special recognition is in conjunction with National Teacher Appreciation Day (first Tuesday of May each year).

Applications must be completed and submitted no later than July 1.

Beginning November 2020, the awards shall be presented at the TEA Teaching and Learning Symposium. TEA will notify recipients of their selection. Each award recipient shall receive a displayable item (e.g., trophy, paperweight, plaque, etc.) and will receive complimentary registration to the TEA Teaching and Learning Symposium. 

Award Categories and Distribution:

The Distinguished Educator Award Program was recently revised by the TEA Board of Directors to expand the number of awards. The DEAP now includes the following awards and distribution:

  • Distinguished New Teacher (All Grades)Nominees must be within their first five (5) years of teaching.
    ~ One Statewide Award (Local associations with less than 100 members)
    ~ One Statewide Award (Local associations with 101-180 members)
    ~ One Statewide Award (Local associations with 181-450 members)
    ~ One Statewide Award (Local associations with 451-999 members)
    ~ One Statewide Award (Local associations with 1,000+ members)
     
  • Distinguished Classroom Teacher Nominees must spend the majority of their day in direct instruction of students.
    ~ One Statewide Award (Local associations with less than 100 members)
    ~ One Statewide Award (Local associations with 101-180 members)
    ~ One Statewide Award (Local associations with 181-450 members)
    ~ One Statewide Award (Local associations with 451-999 members)
    ~ One Statewide Award (Local associations with 1,000+ members)
     
  • Distinguished Education Support ProfessionalNominees must be employed by a public school/district in an assignment that does not require a teaching license (e.g., educational aides, bus drivers, cafeteria workers, secretaries, bookkeepers, school nurses, technology, maintenance, custodians, etc.).
    ~ Two Statewide Awards
     
  • Distinguished AdministratorNominees must spend the majority of their day in supervisory duties (e.g., principals, directors of schools, central office staff who supervise teachers/administrators, etc.).
    ~ One Statewide Award (Local associations with less than 100 members)
    ~ One Statewide Award (Local associations with 101-180 members)
    ~ One Statewide Award (Local associations with 181-450 members)
    ~ One Statewide Award (Local associations with 451-999 members)
    ~ One Statewide Award (Local associations with 1,000+ members)
     
  • Distinguished Higher Education Faculty Member  Nominees must work for a public institution for higher learning (post-secondary) in any department.
    ~ One Statewide Award

Nomination Applications and Rubrics

Click on the link to the DEAP Application to open and complete the application.  You will need to save the application to your computer.  When you are ready to submit the application, click the “submit” button.  Your email application should open with the award application automatically attached to the email.  Before sending the email, you will need to attach your responses to the questions specific to your award category.  Applications without the responses to the questions cannot be considered for an award.

Below are the links to the DEAP application and scoring rubrics judges will use to score DEAP Applications.  Be sure to look over the rubric for the award category for which you are applying to understand what the judges expect from applicants. 

Deadline for application submissions is July 1.  Applicants will receive a confirmation email affirming receipt of application within 48 hours of submission.

Application Submission Instructions:

  1. Print the online application.
  2. Open a word processing application (such as Microsoft Word) and answer the questions related to the award category for which you are applying (beginning on page 3 of the application). Be sure to number your responses to coordinate with the questions. You may wish to review the scoring rubrics prior to responding to questions.
  3. Save your response document to your computer.
  4. Go back to www.teateachers.org/distinguished-educator-award-program-DEAP and click on the link to the online application.
  5. Complete the fillable PDF application and click “submit.”  You will be directed to then save the file to your computer.  Once the file is saved, your computer should ask which email application you would like to open (or it will automatically open the email application you use most). The saved PDF application will automatically attach to a pre-composed/pre-addressed email.  You will need to attach your response document to this same email.  Click “send.” Emails that don’t have both the application and responses are considered incomplete and cannot be considered for an award.
  6. You should receive a confirmation of receipt email within 48 hours of submitting your application and responses.