Guernsey teacher honored with prize for teaching excellence

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GUERNSEY, Wyo. (Wyoming News Now) Over 700 shop teachers across the country were in the running for the Harbor Freight Tools for Schools Prize for Teaching Excellence.

Troy Reichert and his family.

Troy Reichert found out Thursday that he was one of the second place winners and received $50,000. Reichert became the first Wyomingite to receive the award.

“He really does exemplify great career and technical education and that dream that many of us share, that students will leave having the grades to get a diploma and having a skill to go into the workforce or into higher education,” Jillian Balow, Wyoming state superintendent, said.

The award highlights the many CTE and trade programs across the state, and how important they are.

“We’ve underscored career and technical education to be just as important as any other class. Many of us recognize it may be the class that keeps students in schools,” Balow said.

Reichert was presented the award during an assembly at Guernsey-Sunrise Public High School Thursday. The assembly included his students, friends and family.

“It’s almost indescribable because you’re so proud. It’s like if he can do that, what can I do in my future?” Lakin Reichert, Troy’s daughter, said.

Not only did Troy receive a $50,000 check, he was also presented a toolbox with his name and award on it.

“For me it’s an honor to be able to come back and just kind of pay it back a little bit,” Aaron Schnelle, Harbor Freight Tools regional manager, said.

Troy is thankful for the support his program has gotten. He also praised career and technical education teachers across the state.

“For a small 1A Wyoming school, it’s very impressive the amount of support we have here. It shows in this award and I’m just glad I can do my job to earn it for the school,” Troy Reichert, Guernsey-Sunrise Public High School industrial technology teacher, said.

Troy has also helped in the Guernsey community.

“We’re a small community, everybody is tied in together. Troy has done a great job of not only doing things here at the school but also in the community,” Mike Beard, Platte County School District #2 superintendent, said.

Harbor Freight Tools for Schools Prize for Teaching Excellence program donated $1 million to teachers across the nation this year.