The Alliance for Education is seeking nominations for the Philip B. Swain Excellence in Education Award. The award, created in 2000, recognizes the efforts of Seattle Public Schools’ teachers and counselors, particularly those increasing equity in their schools and committed to closing opportunity gaps. Nominees must come from secondary schools serving high percentages of students eligible for free or reduced lunch. The award was established in memory of Philip B. Swain, a passionate advocate for public education throughout his life. His commitment to public service included fourteen years as a member of the Seattle School Board (1961-1975).

In 2019, two teachers and one counselor will be selected to receive the Swain Award, which includes a $1,000 stipend. The $1000 stipend may be used at the awardee’s discretion for continuing professional development, for travel associated with such development, and for classroom projects or supplies.

Criteria for nomination include:

  • Teachers/Counselors in grades 6-12 who have been with the district at least three years;
  • Teachers/Counselors from schools where, for at least two of the past three years, the
    percentage of students eligible for free or reduced-lunch is 40% or higher (Please see the list
    of eligible schools on the distribution list below);
  • Teachers/Counselors who play an active and successful role in closing opportunity gaps for
    students, and recognize that all students can excel;
  • Teachers/Counselors who play a leadership role with their peers in encouraging a
  • commitment to, and sharing best practices toward, advancing equity in their school.

Teachers and counselors may be nominated by students, families, colleagues, principals or other
Seattle Public Schools administrators. If a principal is not the nominator, we request a brief
letter of recommendation from the principal.