‘Mom away from home’ named Sarasota County’s Teacher of the Year

Jan 21, 2021

IGNITE Teacher of the Year Winner - Kari JohnsonKari Johnson, a kindergarten teacher at Fruitville Elementary School who described herself as the “mom away from home” was named the 2020-21 Sarasota County Teacher of the Year Thursday evening in a virtual ceremony hosted by the Education Foundation of Sarasota County.

Johnson will go on to represent the district in the statewide competition in July.

“It’s an honor to be a teacher,” she said, highlighting that teaching is one career where succeeding means helping others succeed.

Fruitville Principal Steven French said, “I have used her as an example many times” when helping teachers with older students realize that they could raise their expectations. He said he would take other teachers into her classroom, where Johnson’s warm demeanor and high expectations serve as a model for others. Continue reading.