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Tinker FCU Announces Winner of 2015 Teacher of the Year
Monday, January 11, 2016 6:50 AM

Tinker Federal Credit Union (TFCU) has named Justin Gerry Financial Empowerment Teacher of the Year in its 6th annual competition. Gerry, a teacher at Jones High School and repeat winner of the contest, won the Award of Excellence for his commitment to teaching his students “real life lessons” on money management.

Gerry was awarded a $1,000 prize and a plaque. A $1,000 prize and plaque was also awarded to Jones High School for the school’s support of financial education.

Gerry said knowing outside eyes will be looking at what happens in his classroom actually helps him with his lessons. “The TFCU competition pushes me every year, because it forces me to think about what the judges will want and what makes for a competitive lesson plan,” Gerry said. “Once I start thinking in that way, I’m able to make changes and really see how it is affecting and improving my classroom.”

Gerry said he thinks his detailed submissions may help him stand out from other participants. “The judges don’t really see what’s going on if I just give an outline, so I try to provide more of a dialogue of what actually happens in the classroom,” he stated. “It does take some time to do, but I want what I submit to be a reflection of what actually happens when I teach that lesson plan. I try to repackage it in a way that allows them to basically peer into my classroom.”

The contest is designed to acknowledge and reward educators who are making a difference by teaching financial education in the classroom. It was open to Oklahoma teachers who teach financial education to students in grades 7-12.

Tinker Federal Credit Union is the largest credit union in Oklahoma, with over $3.4 billion in assets and more than 320,000 members.