Mr. Bill Bayliss, president of the Handley Board of Trustees, presented the Stewart Bell Jr. Excellence in Teaching Award to Dr. Matthew Reames on a virtual Google Meet with staff on September 2, 2020.
Dr. Reames is a 1992 graduate of John Handley High School and has been a 5 th and 6 th grade math teacher at DMIS for the past four years. Dr. Reames has taught math for 22 years in public and private schools in the U.S. and the United Kingdom. “This year’s award recipient was described as someone that can make math relevant and challenging to fifth and sixth graders all while meeting them where they are and providing a hook that makes them want to know more.” Mr. Bayliss read from a letter submitted by the award selection committee. Dr. Reames stated “I work with so many great teachers. It really could have been any of us.”
The award was established by former Winchester Mayor Stewart Bell, Jr. in 1985 with a $20,000 endowment intended to reward exceptional performance in classroom teaching. In 1997, enough interest had accrued to grant the first award which has since been presented annually to a Winchester Public Schools teacher based on a rotation of each of the city schools. Mr. Bell, a former teacher and principal, created the award to honor those individuals whose interest, enthusiasm, and support of children may influence them positively for the rest of their lives. Those eligible for selection include classroom teachers, librarians, and guidance counselors. Nominations for the Stewart Bell Jr. Excellence in Teaching Award are solicited in the spring and are open to the public.