Kizmet Chandler - Nitro High School - named the 2018 WV History Teacher of the Year

Information provided by the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History -- Award Grantor

Ms. Kizmet Chandler, a teacher at Nitro High School, has been named the 2018 WV History Teacher of the Year, an award presented annually by the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, the nation’s leading organization dedicated to K-12 American history education.

Inaugurated in 2004, the History Teacher of the Year Award highlights the crucial importance of history education by honoring exceptional American history teachers from elementary school through high school. The award honors one K-12 teacher from each state, the District of Columbia, Department of Defense schools and US Territories. In fall 2018, the National History Teacher of the Year will be selected from the pool of state winners.

Ms. Kizmet Chandler joined Kanawha County Schools in 2013 after receiving her Bachelor of Science in Secondary Education- Social Studies and Bachelor of Arts in History.  She continued her studies and earned her Master of Arts in Special Education and her certification in Educational Leadership in 2017.  Ms. Chandler currently teaches AP Government, Civics and United States Studies.  She believes in challenging her students to develop an understanding and passion for history and strives to provide real world learning experiences to prepare her students to be productive citizens of the community in which they reside.  

She is not afraid to accept new challenges and has proven that she can handle stepping outside of her comfort zone when tasked.  Ms. Chandler has attended the Gilder Lehrman Institute, We the People for Civic Education and SREB High Schools That Work conferences.  She also has been a presenter for the WV State Social Studies Conference and with the WV Center for Professional Development.  In 2016 she was the Nitro High School Rookie of the Year and in 2017 she was awarded the Rising Star for Technology by the West Virginia Center for Professional Development.  

In addition to a $1,000 honorarium and an award ceremony in WV, Ms. Chandler’s school library will receive a core archive of American history books and Gilder Lehrman educational materials. Ms. Chandler will also receive an invitation to a 2019 Gilder Lehrman Teacher Seminar, a weeklong program that offers teachers daily discussions with eminent historians, visits to historic sites, and hands-on work with primary sources. 

The National History Teacher of the Year award will be presented by Professor Edward Ayers at a ceremony in New York City on October 10, 2018. Past presenters at the ceremony include the Honorable Sandra Day O’Connor, Good Morning America's Robin Roberts, First Lady Laura Bush, former US Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, and former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

Nominations for the 2019 History Teacher of the Year awards are now open. Students, parents, colleagues, and supervisors may nominate K-12 teachers for the award by visiting The deadline for 2019 nominations is March 30, 2019.

About the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History

Founded in 1994 by philanthropists Richard Gilder and Lewis E. Lehrman, the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History is the nation’s leading organization dedicated to K-12 American history education. The Institute’s mission is to promote the knowledge and understanding of American history through educational programs and resources. Drawing on the 65,000 documents in the Gilder Lehrman Collection and an extensive network of eminent historians, the Institute provides teachers, students, and the general public with direct access to unique primary source materials. The Institute’s programs have been recognized by awards from the White House, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the Organization of American Historians.