A Livingston County educator known for linking classroom lessons to real life experiences, such as creating a catering service operated by eighth graders and providing packaged meals for hungry children, has been honored with an Excellence in Education award from the Michigan Lottery.
The award winner, Michael Scheib, is an eighth-grade teacher specializing in English and life skills at the Hartland Middle School at Ore Creek. The school is part of the Hartland Consolidated Schools district.
Scheib said the student catering service offers a monthly restaurant service for school staff members, a weekly subscription lunch service, and caters school events from time to time. The students also make cakes for special occasions, such as parties and weddings.
In addition, each year the students pay for and package 10,000 meals for Kids Against Hunger, a food aid organization working to reduce the number of hungry children in the United States and to feed starving children around the world.
The Michigan Lottery recently established the Excellence in Education awards to recognize outstanding public school educators across the state during the school year.
Winners of the weekly award receive a plaque, a $500 cash prize, and a $500 grant to their classroom, school or school district. One of the weekly winners will be selected as the Educator of the Year and will receive a $10,000 cash prize.
Each winner also is featured in a news segment on the Lottery’s media partner stations: WXYZ-TV in Detroit, FOX 17 in Grand Rapids, and FOX 47 in Lansing. The news segment featuring Scheib will air this evening in Grand Rapids and Lansing and Thursday evening in Detroit.
For the Excellence in Education awards program, the Lottery has teamed up with Michigan State University basketball coach Tom Izzo. Izzo met recently with Scheib at the Breslin Center and presented him with the award.
Scheib said he was attracted to a career in education because “it’s a flexible career with a fair degree of autonomy. I like working with people best and find the classroom provides plenty of opportunity for creativity and fun.”
He said his favorite part of being an educator is “watching the kids light up with accomplishment. It’s really gratifying when you see them master something that they’ve struggled with a long time. I never doubt that everyone can do everything.”
Scheib said his inspiration to do his best every day in the classroom comes from his two sons, one in elementary school and the other in middle school. “I work hard to provide my students with the sort of experience that I want my children to have: smart, fair, useful, and fun.”
Scheib earned a bachelor of arts degree in English from the University of Michigan-Flint, and then moved to Milwaukee, where he taught for seven years at an inner city school. He went on to earn a master of arts degree in education from National Louis University, in Evanston, Ill. He’s been an educator for 30 years, the past 20 with the Hartland Consolidated Schools district, and has been in his current position for nine years.
The Excellence in Education award nomination for Scheib noted that he has a wide experience as an educator: “He has taught Advanced Placement Composition courses to high school seniors and has worked with severely impaired students in the middle school. He has served as the language arts department chair, and as a summer school principal.
The nomination added: “He teaches kids what some would say are ‘things that should be learned at home.’ But home is different now and he doesn’t stand in judgment. He teaches. Whether it is how to wash a dish, how to clean and disinfect, how to sew, knit, and garden; he teaches it all. He teaches his students how to plan a meal, a budget, and bake a cake, pie or bread. He challenges his students and shares his life learning experiences with his students, year after year.”
Outstanding public school educators may be nominated for an Excellence in Education award at http://bit.ly/ExcellenceInEducation or through the websites of the Lottery’s media partner stations.
Excellence in Education award nominees will be evaluated on the following criteria:
- Excellence – Their work consistently helps students and/or their schools or school districts advance to higher levels of academic achievement.
- Dedication – They consistently go above and beyond expectations to help students succeed.
- Inspiration – Their work inspires others around them to exceed expectations either academically or professionally.
- Leadership – They demonstrate clear leadership skills in their positions with their school or school districts
- Effectiveness – The nominee’s work has clear and positive results on the educational advancement of students within the school or school district.