Illinois educator in running for ‘Nobel’ for teaching

CHICAGO (AP) — An Illinois high school teacher known for blending hip-hop, technology and video games into lessons is in the running for a $1 million award considered the Nobel Prize for teaching. Joseph Fatheree is an instructor of creativity and innovation at Effingham High School. He’s one of 10 finalists for the Varkey Foundation’s Global Teacher Prize and will travel to Dubai next month for an educational forum and award ceremony. He calls it “an amazing honor.” Fatheree began experimenting as an English teacher in 1990 by weaving music, popular culture and business into lesson plans. He tells the Chicago Tribune that he saw an overnight change in the excitement and interest of students. The high school is now home to a student-led film festival and technology such as 3-D printing.