Two area high school teachers are top-10 finalists for 2023 Indiana Teacher of the Year.
Jason Beer, an English teacher at Homestead High School, and Tara Cocanower, who teaches social studies at Bluffton High School, advanced to the top 10 after being named to the Top 25.
The Indiana Department of Education will announce the teacher of the year this fall. The 10 finalists will be interviewed by a panel of former teachers of the year and department of education staff.
Beer and Cocanower were both named teachers of the year in their respective school districts – Beer in Southwest Allen County Schools and Cocanower in Bluffton-Harrison MSD.
Beer previously taught at Chicago Public Schools, Columbia City High School, Eagle Tech Academy and New Tech Academy at Wayne High School. He has been at Homestead for seven years.
Along with standard English classes, Beer has taught travel writing and a novel and screenwriting course, which debuted this school year.
Cocanower has been an educator for 13 years and is in her ninth year with Bluffton-Harrison, where she teaches world history and advanced placement world history.