Local educator named finalist for top teacher

A Franklin teacher who has helped her students see the world is a finalist to be named the best teacher in the state.

Kathleen Sarles, a government and world history teacher at Franklin Community High School, has been named a top 10 finalist for the 2018 Teacher of the Year award through the Indiana Department of Education.

Finalists are chosen from applicants across the state who have been named their school districts’ teacher of the year, and the screening and selection committee is made up of former recipients, Indiana Department of Education staff, educational organization leaders, business and community leaders and representatives from higher education.

Sarles was named the Franklin school district teacher of the year in in May. The winner of the Indiana Department of Education award will represent Indiana at a national level, according to a news release from the Indiana Department of Education.

She has been a history and social studies teacher at Franklin Community High School for 17 years.

A few years into teaching at the high school, she set up an informal traveling club that plans trips around the world. Sometimes, students tag along.

And she has traveled the world on her own, racking up scholarships and travel grants.

She earned a Toyota International Teacher Scholarship, which allowed her to spend three weeks studying in Japan. She has been to Iceland as part of an educational tour and learned about teaching aspects at a convention in China.

Travels have taken her to all seven continents and to 40 nations. Part of why she travels is to show that the world is smaller than most people think and that technology and travel are connecting people, she has said.

Sarles also has coached volleyball and started a boys volleyball team at the school. She has also led a safety program for female students meant to teach them how to stay safe.

The winner of the state award will be announced in October.


Name: Kathleen Sarles

Job: History and government teacher at Franklin Community High School

Honor: Franklin Community Schools Teacher of the Year. Finalist for the Indiana Department of Education 2018 Teacher of the Year award.

Education: Bachelor of science in secondary education/social studies from Ball State University.

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Magen Kritsch is an editorial assistant at the Daily Journal. She can be reached at mkritsch@dailyjournal.net or 317-736-2770.