Nicole Gardner-Fink has been a teacher in the Sioux Falls area for 17 years.
Criteria for selection of the Teacher of the Year include:
- Commitment to lifelong learning
- Effectiveness in meeting students' needs
- Impact on student achievement
- Effectiveness of home-school cooperation
- Community involvement to promote school-community relations
Other 2011 finalists include: Dean Marty, 5th Grade teacher at the Challenge Center elementary; Deb Pedersen, 4th and 5th in the Bridges program at Horace Mann, John Rodman, Physical Education at Harvey Dunn Elementary; and Amy Schander, 9-12th Grade mathematics at Washington High School.