Springfield Public Schools announced Wednesday that Central High School’s Spanish teacher is the 2020-2021 Teacher of the Year.
Armando Johnson earned the honor over five finalists.
Johnson worked as a drill sergeant at a boot camp prison where he taught job acquisition resume skills courses. That experience drove him to earn an education degree.
Johnson has taught Spanish for 22 years. He joined Springfield Public Schools in 2011 from Labette Community College where he was also the head men’s basketball coach. He retired from coaching to concentrate on the classroom and working to make sure “underrepresented youth can see someone who looks like them and shares a similar background.”
Johnson has incorporated unconventional vientional techniques into his classes, such as bringing American Sign Language in to teach Spanish.
Johnson also works with students to connect them with education beyond his classes. He likes to work with students to learn Latin American history and identity.
Johnson will now compete for the Regional Teacher of the Year award presented by the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.