Superintendent Arntzen Announces Kristi Borge of Polaris as Montana’s 2021 Teacher of the Year
September 10, 2020
POLARIS, MT—Superintendent of Public Instruction Elsie Arntzen joined Polaris students and educators Thursday morning to congratulate Kristi Borge on being named Montana’s 2021 Teacher of the Year. Mrs. Borge teaches all grade levels and subjects in the one-room K-8 schoolhouse in Polaris. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education and a Master of Education in Curriculum & Instruction both from Montana State University.
“Congratulations to Mrs. Borge and the entire Polaris community! It is my honor to appoint Kristi to represent Montana in the National Teacher of the Year program,” Superintendent Arntzen said Thursday. “Kristi will serve as a teacher-leader in Montana and as a strong voice for our most rural students on the national stage. Her colleagues have consistently praised Kristi for her passion, creativity, and focus on individualized learning, especially through the COVID-19 outbreak.”
“It was my honor to nominate Kristi to become Montana’s 2021 Teacher of the Year. I have worked with Kristi for several years and have seen firsthand her ability to create an environment with a positive culture for learning in which all students are free to make choices, ask and find answers to their questions, and develop a love of learning,” Beaverhead County Superintendent of Schools Linda Marsh said Thursday. “During the school closures this spring due to COVID-19, she displayed great flexibility incorporating technology to ensure her students didn’t miss a beat. She even kept the year-end awards tradition alive virtually and provided summer school instruction to her students.”
Mrs. Borge rose to the top of the field after a rigorous and competitive selection process. An initial selection committee met to review applications last month and recommend finalists who were interviewed by a separate selection committee. Other finalists included Christina Cote-Reinhart from Gardiner, Jeff Stanek from St. Regis, and Karen Herrin from Deer Lodge.
The selection committees consisted of representatives from the Montana Advisory Council on Indian Education, the Montana University System, the Governor’s Office, the Montana Chamber of Commerce, the Montana Legislature, the Montana Teacher of the Year Alumni Association, as well as local school administrators and teachers.
Mrs. Borge will go on to represent Montana in the 2021 National Teacher of the Year Program. Visit OPI’s website for more information about the Montana Teacher of the Year Program: http://opi.mt.gov/Educators/Teaching-Learning/Montana-Teacher-of-the-Year.
CONTACT: Dylan Klapmeier
Director of Communications, Montana Office of Public Instruction