The Utah State Board of Education named Mark Berrett Daniels, a theatre teacher at Weber High School and Weber Education Association member, as 2022 Utah Teacher of the Year. He was presented with a check for $10,000 and will compete with his state fellow teachers of the year in a national competition. He will participate in a number of state and national leadership opportunities.
Bountiful Jr. High School (Davis School District) choir teacher Katherine “Kasey” Bradbury and West Lake STEM Jr. High School (Granite School District) Spanish dual immersion teacher Albert Ferrarons Font were named runners up and each received $4,000.
A committee with representatives from the Utah Education Association, parents, charter schools and the Utah State Board of Education selected the finalists from among local teachers of the year for the honor.
“Mr. Daniels is not only one of the most talented people I’ve ever met, but one of the kindest and hardworking as well,” wrote Ashton Smith, one of his former students. “Throughout my experience at Weber High, Daniels rarely takes days off, and is begging to come back as soon as possible whenever he misses rehearsals or classes. He is dedicated to his teaching and his theatre department at Weber, and hundreds of students benefit from it every single year.”
“While most teachers complain of large class sizes, Mark welcomes the opportunity to teacher 50 plus students in all of his classes. It doesn’t matter who you are, Mark wants you in his class,” wrote Weber High Principal Chris Earnest. “He gets to know each student individually and structures his teaching to meet the different learning styles of his students. Mark teaches skills such as communication, relationship building, grit, endurance, resiliency, humility, grace and teamwork that help students become successful now and throughout life.”
“His enthusiasm, love, and passion for teaching has garnered no competition. Mr. Daniels is in a league all on his own,” wrote Abigail J. Rigby, the parent of one of his students.
Daniels succeeds John Arthur, a fifth-grade teacher at Salt Lake City’s Meadowlark Elementary School and Salt Lake Education Association member, as 2022 Utah Teacher of the Year.