Tennessee Education Association

Great Public Schools for All Students


Distinguished Educator Award Program (DEAP)

dis-tin-guished: adj. — marked by excellence or distinction


If you believe that excellence in education is both an art and a science that cannot be reduced to a number, the Tennessee Education Association invites you to find out how you can recognize TEA members at all levels of service and experience through the Distinguished Educator Awards Program.  TEA wants to honor those educators who inspire students, parents, colleagues, and the community through their talents, leadership, and community service. 

A tradition since 1982, the awards program was originally designed to honor classroom teachers; however, it has been expanded to include professionals across the field.  This year the program has been expanded to include the Distinguished New Teacher Awards to honor educators who have five or fewer years of service.  The program includes the following awards and distribution:

  • Distinguished New Teacher Awards (3) — Pre-K-Grade 4, Grades 5-8, and Grades 9-12
  • Distinguished Classroom Teacher Awards (9) — All grades with three awards from each grand division
  • Distinguished Education Support Professional Award (1) — Any classified educator
  • Distinguished Administrator Awards (3) — One administrator from each grand division
  • Distinguished Higher Education Faculty Member (1) — One faculty member whose primary assignment is at the college/university level

The deadline for all the distinguished award categories is February 2.  Since the local association or local STEA chapters must endorse all nominations that advance to the state competition, the nomination process should be initiated in the fall semester.    

The nomination process varies greatly for the new teacher and experienced educator awards. Please refer to the
nomination and selection procedures for each group.

Let this be the year that members of your association know that their excellence is appreciated and recognized by their colleagues in the Tennessee Education Association.