ANNAPOLIS JUNCTION, MD, May 12, 2020 — Jessica Napier, a health teacher with Lee County, was recently named the National Health Education Teacher of the Year by SHAPE America – Society of Health and Physical Educators at its first ever virtual event.
The award is given in recognition of outstanding teaching performance in health education and the ability to motivate students to participate in a lifetime of healthy choices.
Napier, a health teacher at Lee County Middle School for more than fifteen years, vied with four other district winners for the distinguished honor of National Health Education Teacher of the Year. This year marked the beginning of a new enhanced sponsorship between SHAPE America’s Teacher of the Yearand Goodheart-Willcox, Gopher, SPARK and Wellness Training Specialist.
In all, six National Teachers of the Year were selected in the areas of adapted physical education, dance education, health education, elementary physical education, middle school physical education and high school physical education.
“When I rank my favorite classes, my health education class is at the top of my list” says student, ErinMcIntosh. Recognized for her individualized instruction, Ms. Napier focuses on providing her students with comprehensive skills-based health education instruction based on their needs, not the needs of theteacher. She is “very intentional about not only providing quality content, but also quality instruction,”which creates a welcoming environment for her students, but also makes her a leader in the field.
She’s been known to volunteer her time outside of school hours to improve the health curriculum, andtutor students in all subjects. As a Kentucky Health Teacher of the Year 2018-2019, Kentucky Health Teacher Cadre and a member of the Kentucky Health Standards Revision Panel, Jessica is a tireless contributor to the health of the community around her.
“I am an innovative teacher,” says Napier. I was selected as KY’s Health Education Teacher of the Year for 2018-2019 school year based on innovative strategies and forward thinking. Strategies such as paperless teaching with 1:1 Chromebook, and trauma informed teaching radically changed the way I teach. I was also an innovative member of KY Health Standards Revision Team. Our work was critical in
changing outdated standards to updated, innovative skills-based standards. Once the standards were adopted, I re-wrote my units so that they are now skills-based.”
Napier’s received a bachelor’s degree in physical education from Berea College and a master’s degreein health education from Morehead State University.
About SHAPE America
SHAPE America – Society of Health and Physical Educators is the nation’s largest nonprofit membershiporganization of health and physical education professionals. Since its founding in 1885, the organization has defined excellence in physical education, and the National Standards for K-12 Physical Education serve as the foundation for well-designed physical education programs across the country. SHAPE America provides programs, resources and advocacy to support health and physical educators at every level, from preschool to university graduate programs. For more information,