Senior Vice-president of Arch Coal Paul Lang, far right, congratulates Lori Labrum of Cottonwood Elementary along with Utah Education Association Vice President Tom Nedreberg on the left.
The Arch Coal teacher awards were presented in Richfield last week. An Emery County teacher, Lori Labrum earned top honors in the event. Ken May from Arch Coal, Sufco mine was the emcee for the event.
Labrum believes the most important lesson she leaves with her students is to enjoy learning, because learning is for a lifetime. "It does not matter if a student values learning about the past, present, future, literature, science or any other discipline, all students need skills and knowledge to search out their interests," says the 26-year teaching veteran.
"As a teacher in the 21st century, I need to guide students in new ways of accessing available information to increase their learning," she adds. "With new technology so readily available, this is certainly an exciting time for a teacher."
Labrum is one of only five Utah teachers to receive a 2011 Arch Coal Teacher Achievement Award. Arch Coal Senior Vice President Paul Lang made the announcement at Ashman Elementary School. He was accompanied by Utah Education Association Vice President Tom Nedreberg. This is the fifth year the Arch Coal Teacher Achievement Awards have been made in Utah.
"Lori Labrum's goal is to help her students become lifelong learners, to use available technology to enrich knowledge in their areas of interest and to broaden their interests," says Lang. "She wants them to see there is a big world out there and help them find ways to improve their own parts of that world."
An Orangeville resident, Labrum teaches third-grade students at Cottonwood Elementary School, Orangeville. "My philosophy of teaching comes from many years of experience and is continually being refined," she notes. "As the years go by, I have seen children's abilities and desires to learn change, requiring a change in me as well.
"I know that students will rise to the expectations that are set for them," she adds. "I expect my students to always achieve, and together we work for the goal. I do not accept the word 'try,' because it allows an excuse for not accomplishing a goal. In my classroom, our motto is, 'I will do it.' We don't just try; we do it. We do our best each day, and tomorrow our best will be better."
Labrum earned a bachelor's degree at Weber State College, Ogden, and a master's degree at Southern Utah University, Cedar City. A past Arch Coal Golden Apple Achiever recipient, she has achieved reading and math endorsements and uses every opportunity to keep current on teaching styles, new curriculum, classroom management and other aspects of education through college classes, workshops and seminars, as well as her extensive library of professional books, journals, periodicals and the Internet. Labrum further supports her community by helping older residents. She also has volunteered for a range of community sports, civic and church activities.
The Arch Coal Foundation's teacher recognition program is available to classroom teachers in Carbon, Emery, Sanpete and Sevier counties. The counties surround the Skyline, Dugout Canyon and Sufco mines operated by Canyon Fuel Company, a subsidiary of major U.S. coal producer Arch Coal, Inc. Each recipient receives a distinctive trophy, a classroom plaque and a $3,500 personal cash award.
Partners for the program include the Office of the Governor, Utah State Office of Education, Utah Education Association, Utah School Superintendents Association, Carbon County School District, Emery County School District, Sevier County School District, North Sanpete School District, South Sanpete School District, Far West Bank, Market Express, radio stations KMTI, KLGL, KMGR, KSVC, KCYQ, KOAL, KARB, KRPX, and both TacoTime and Bookcliff Sales in Price.
Arch's Canyon Fuel Company is Utah's largest coal producer and a large, state employer, with a workforce of more than 800. U.S.-based Arch Coal, Inc. is one of the world's largest and most efficient coal producers, with more than 160 million tons of coal sold in 2010. Arch's national network of mines supplies cleaner-burning, low-sulfur coal to customers on four continents, including U.S. and international power producers and steel manufacturers.
The five award-winning teachers of 2011 are: Bonny Dahlsrud from Salina Elementary School; Karen A. Hansen-Gunnison Valley Middle School; Lori Ware Labrum
Cottonwood Elementary School; Ashlee Larsen-Monroe Elementary School; Janiece Tuttle-Ashman Elementary School in Richfield.
"It's clear that Utahns believe in the value of quality education provided by caring, professional teachers," said Lang. "These award-winning teachers are not only masters of the materials they teach, but also provide a caring, nurturing environment for their students. They challenge the children and support their efforts to succeed."
"The Utah Education Association is proud to partner with the Arch Coal Foundation to honor these outstanding educators," said Nedreberg. "These professionals are helping to build a bright future for our state. They represent the very best of Utah's many talented teachers. I learned about coal as a child. Where I came from they mined coal with a steam shovel so big and large that one school would fill an entire truck."
Nedreberg asked the students if they knew what coal was used for. They answered for fire. He told them coal can be used for a lot of things including electricity which keeps the lights on. Eighty percent of electricity comes from coal. Coal is an important resource and our teachers are an important resource. "We are proud to partner with Arch Coal to honor teachers who enrich our students lives," said Nedreberg.
May told the audience that in Sevier County coal related production and activity accounts for one third of the tax base. Lang said that Arch Coal believes in the importance of giving back to the communities where Arch Coal mines play an important role.
Labrum said, "Teaching is just wonderful and I love it. The kids are so great. The parents at Cottonwood Elementary are so great to work with. The faculty and staff are the greatest."