VFW names Hitchcock Teacher of the Year

COAL CITY MIDDLE School social studies teacher and U.S. Army veteran Jim Hitchcock was selected as the 18th District VFW Citizenship Education Teacher of the Year. Hitchcock was recognized by VFW State Commander Jeff Hastings at the district’s awards banquet at the New Lenox VFW Post on Jan. 28. Photo by Bill Bomba

Coal City Middle School social studies teacher Jim Hitchcock was selected the Veterans of Foreign Wars Department of Illinois 18th District Citizenship Education Teacher of the Year.          
Hitchcock was nominated for the recognition by St. Juvin Post 1336 for his dedication to the education of his students on the history of the United States and the sacrifices that our veterans have made to secure the freedoms we enjoy.  
The teacher knows of those sacrifices first hand, as he is a U.S. Army veteran and few, other than a veteran, would feel as deep a commitment to the ideals that make this country great.
Hitchcock originally contacted St. Juvin Post in 2011 asking about a veteran's visit to his classes. This developed into a presentation to the entire 550 or so middle school students, faculty and staff at an assembly around Veteran's Day.
VFW's 18th District includes all of Grundy, Will, Kendall and part of DeKalb counties in Illinois and is comprised of 14 VFW Posts.
Hitchcock’s selection now goes to the state level and possibly to national judging for the Smart/Maher National VFW Citizenship Teacher of the Year.
The award recognizes one elementary, junior high and high school teacher with a $1,000 award for professional development expenses, $1,000 for his/her school, award plaques for the recipient and the school, and an all expenses paid trip to attend a VFW conference to receive their award.