Student Excellence Foundation honors D200 educators at annual 'Celebrate Our Stars' event

Updated 6/24/2020 1:39 PM

Each year, a group of outstanding educators in Wheaton Warrenville Unit District 200 are honored at the Student Excellence Foundation's "Celebrate Our Stars" event. All of the talented educators who work with the children have met unbelievable challenges this spring as they quickly moved to develop dynamic e-learning strategies to keep students engaged and learning during this very unusual time.

The Distinguished Educator Awards strive to recognize those who have gone above and beyond to make a special impact on their students.


The foundation received over 100 nominations from District 200 students, parents/guardians, alumni, staff and members of the community.

The 13th annual Distinguished Educator Award recipients were chosen in a blind-selection process by a panel of three retired District 200 principals.

This year six current District 200 educators have received the Distinguished Educator Award, and two retired District 200 educators have received the Golden Star Award.

As we remain physically distant and cannot celebrate in person, the Foundation has produced a video event that provides an opportunity to hear from each of the "Stars."

The video can be viewed on the Foundation's website,

by signing up you agree to our terms of service

The recipients of the 2020 Distinguished Educator Awards are:

• Annie Murray, Pleasant Hill Elementary School (third grade)

• Lee Prior, Monroe Middle School (sixth grade language arts)

• Kyle Padera, Wheaton North High School (English)

• Diane Graham, Madison Elementary School (LLC Director)

• Chris Carey, Edison Middle School (reading specialist)

• Richard Burrell, Wheaton Warrenville South High School (World Languages)

The recipients of the 2020 Golden Star Award for retired educators are:

• Jacky DeClute, 20 years at Lowell & other elementary schools (art)

• Margaret Grace, 45 years at Hawthorne and then Edison (elementary classroom and gifted programming)

Founded in 1992 as a 501(c) (3) nonprofit organization, the Student Excellence Foundation serves Wheaton-Warrenville Unit District 200's 1,800 educators and nearly 13,000 students in 13 elementary schools, 4 middle schools, 2 high schools, an early childhood center, and a transition center, and is dependent upon parent and community volunteers. Your donation is tax deductible to the fullest extent allowed by law.

Article Comments
Attention: We are experiencing technical difficulties with our Facebook Comments module at this time. Comments will remain disabled until we are able to resolve the problem. We apologize for the interruption. We invite you to engage with our content and talk with other commenters on our Daily Herald Facebook page at Thank you.