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SHAPE America Teacher of the Year Program Updates & FAQs

Since 1983, the SHAPE America Teacher of the Year program has recognized teaching excellence across the physical education and health education landscape. The program has been sponsored by Sportime, the physical education brand of School Specialty, Inc, since 1989. Over the past 30 years, our partnership has ensured many opportunities to the SHAPE America Teachers of the Year, providing them with quality physical education equipment, apparel, and opportunities to travel and present their ideas and innovative, standards-based practices with other teachers across the country. We are honored to have supported the SHAPE America Teacher of the Year program for such an unprecedented period of time.

As the physical education and health education landscape continue to evolve, our strategic priorities within this important educational sector continue to evolve as well. Looking ahead, we are investing in resources to expand our professional development offering, health and nutrition resources, and lifelong fitness and wellness solutions. As a result, School Specialty Inc.|Sportime is announcing that this will be the final year of our sponsorship of the SHAPE America Teacher of the Year program. However, School Specialty remains dedicated to supporting SHAPE America and our community of physical education and health education teachers. We are also committed to helping educators transform their physical education, health, and wellness programs to support the needs of all students. Thus, we will support SHAPE America's mission in new and exciting ways, including as sponsor of the 2019 Professional Learning Institute, “Exploring the Mind-Body Connection, Social & Emotional Learning in Health and Physical Education,” July 31 - August 1, 2019 in Sioux Falls, SD.

School Specialty will also continue to support past SHAPE America Teacher of the Year award winners at select state and local conferences and professional development events, enabling them to continue to share their innovative ideas and best practices with other educators. In addition, we are proud to work with many award-winning teachers as professional consultants to support our physical education, health education, and student wellness programs.

Finally, we will also continue to provide SHAPE America teachers with highly competitive contracted pricing discounts to ensure that their students have access to the high-quality physical education equipment that they need to learn, practice and succeed.


Frequently Asked Questions

FAQs for past and current SHAPE America Teacher of the Year award winners


When does School Specialty’s sponsorship of the SHAPE America Teacher of the Year program end?
August 31, 2019


How do I place my SHAPE America Teacher of the Year equipment order?

  • Past and current Teacher of the Year award winners can still order presentation equipment from School Specialty through July 31, 2019 for presentations scheduled before August 31, 2019.
  • 2019 Teacher of the Year award winners can still receive personal equipment for personal and/or professional needs up to $400 (List Price).  All orders need to be submitted to School Specialty by July 31, 2019.
  • Please send School Specialty your equipment order request 4 weeks prior to the event date for your sessions scheduled before August 31, 2019 so that your order is fulfilled on time. 
  • See question #6 for ordering equipment for #SHAPESLC.


How do I place my Teacher of the Year equipment order after August 31, 2019?

  • SHAPE America will explore opportunities with other organizations to sponsor equipment for SHAPE America Teacher of the Year conference presentations and will provide an update and next steps when a new sponsor is secured.
  • School Specialty and SHAPE America will work closely together to ensure a smooth transition and support the SHAPE America Teachers of the Year during this change.
  • It is especially important to connect hosting groups with Michelle Carter now if you receive presentation requests.  She can work with hosting groups to see if they already have access to any equipment you may be able to use when you present.


How do I get my School Specialty PE equipment discount?

  • School Specialty will honor the special PE equipment discount for 2019 SHAPE America Teachers of the Year through April 21, 2020. Please contact Christine Davis (Christine.davis@schoolspecialty.com) to place your order. 
  • School Specialty will provide PE equipment discounts to all SHAPE America Teachers of the Year by providing highly competitive contracted pricing discounts to their schools. Teachers will get access to the best pricing by ordering with their school district discount. Please contact Christine Davis (Christine.davis@schoolspecialty.com) for help ordering with your school district discount.


What shirt do I wear for my presentations?

  • You should still wear your 2019 SHAPE America Teacher of the Year polo shirt for your presentations through August 31, 2019.
  • After August 31, 2019 SHAPE America Teachers of the Year may wear any professional attire they choose although preferably SHAPE America Teacher of the Year merchandise.


What presentation PowerPoint template do I use for my presentations?

  • You should continue to follow the same processes for your Teacher of the Year presentations, including using the 2019 SHAPE America Teacher of the Year PowerPoint template, wearing your SHAPE America Teacher of the Year polo shirt, using the School Specialty lead cards, as usual through August 31, 2019.
  • SHAPE America will provide an update on processes, PowerPoint template, etc. as the program evolves over the coming months. Feel free to contact Michelle Carter (mcarter@shapeamerica.org) with any questions.


What if I already have a presentation scheduled for after August 31, 2019?

  • Michelle Carter will work with the hosting group to see what options there are for getting equipment for your sessions.
  • Please e-mail Michelle Carter (mcarter@shapeamerica.org) with the subject line “TOY Presentation after 8/31/2019” and the following information:
    • The name of the session(s)
    • What equipment you need for each session
    • Where and when you will be presenting each session
    • The point of contact for each different host group


What should I expect for the SHAPE America National Convention in Salt Lake City next year?

  • SHAPE America will ensure that your experience at the National Convention & Expo is of the highest quality.  We are excited to explore new experiences and opportunities for the SHAPE America Teachers of the Year at #SHAPESLC!
  • The 2019 SHAPE America Teachers of the Year will still present their group presentations.
  • The 2019 SHAPE America National Teachers of the Year will still announce the 2020 SHAPE America Teachers of the Year respective to their content area.


Will I have equipment for my #SHAPESLC group TOY presentations and/or, who will provide it?

  • Yes, you will still have equipment for your group presentations.
  • SHAPE America will ensure that you have the equipment you need for your presentation.  Equipment will be sourced through a new program partner, the Local Acquisitions Committee, or a combination of both.
  • Please e-mail Michelle Carter with your TOY group presentations equipment needs by September 15, 2019 with the subject line: “Salt Lake City TOY Group presentation Equipment Needs”.


Who do I contact with questions?


How do I continue to work with School Specialty?

  • School Specialty is proud to work with past SHAPE America Teacher of the Year award recipients as professional consultants to support our physical education, health education, and student wellness programs.
  • The School Specialty team of professional consultants serve as an advisory council, deliver engaging professional development experiences onsite and online, and provide content expertise to support new product development and educational resources.
  • In addition, School Specialty consultants work with School Specialty to share teaching strategies, best practices and activity ideas on the blog and new on-demand webinar series.
  • If you are interested in joining the School Specialty team, contact Christine Davis at Christine.davis@schoolspecialty.com.


What’s next for School Specialty?
School Specialty is committed to serving teachers and their students. We state we transform much more than classrooms and we stand by that statement through our Professional Development and Grant Assist® programs as well as our commitment to developing safe and supportive comprehensive learning environments.

We will continue to promote student health and wellness and support physical education and health education best practices, as we keep investing in our renowned Sportime brand which offers a full line of best-in-class physical education and wellness products and resources.

Also, we will continue to support SHAPE America's mission in new and exciting ways, including as sponsor of the SHAPE America 2019 Professional Learning Institute, “Exploring the Mind-Body Connection, Social & Emotional Learning in Health and Physical Education,” July 31 - August 1, 2019 in Sioux Falls, SD.

Finally, we will also continue to provide SHAPE America Teachers of the Year with highly competitive contracted pricing discounts for their school districts to ensure that their students have access to the high-quality physical education equipment that they need to learn, practice and succeed.