The selection process for the annual Lewis Award for Excellence in Teaching begins early in the school year with nominations sent to the Lewis Award Committee Chair. The nomination period runs from September 1st to September 30th. Nomination of a full time classroom teacher meeting the criteria for participating in the selection process for the Award may be made by anyone. Multiple nominations of a single individual are not necessary. At the close of the Nomination period, the list of nominees is sent to the Diocesan Schools Office to verify the nominee meets the criteria to be a candidate for that year’s Lewis Award.
In October a packet, which includes information on the Lewis Award and instructions for participating in the selection process, is sent to each candidate. A candidate wishing to participate in the process must have the packet completed and returned to the Committee by the first of December. A copy of each candidate’s packet is then sent to the Lewis Award Committee members.
In early January, the Lewis Award Committee meets to identify the three Finalists for that year’s Award. The three Finalists and their principals are notified. The Chair contacts each of the Finalists’ principals and arranges a schedule for Committee members to make unannounced classroom visits to observe the teacher in the classroom setting and to interview him or her afterwards. The Committee members visit a Finalist in teams of two members each. Traditionally, classroom visitations occur during a three week period in February.
The Lewis Award Committee members meet in early March to elect the Recipient from the three Finalists. The Recipient of that year’s Award is informed of his or her election, and the Chair begins planning the Award’s Presentation with the Recipient’s principal.
Presentation of the Lewis Award for Excellence in Teaching traditionally occurs in April during a Liturgy honoring the Recipient at his or her school’s parish church. The Bishop presides at the Liturgy. Monsignor Lewis is the Homilist and the school community participates in the celebration.