Midvale Middle mathematics teacher Maxwell Eddington has an exponentially positive effect on his students. This much was clear to a blue-ribbon panel that has chosen Eddington, now in his ninth year as an educator, as a runner-up to the Utah Teacher of the Year.
The selection of Eddington as one of the Beehive State’s premier educators was announced by the Utah State Board of Education on Thursday, Oct. 5, 2023 at a banquet and ceremony in Salt Lake City. The prestigious state-level honor, which comes with a $4,000 award, makes him the third CSD teacher to earn finalist status in the Utah top-teacher selection process.
Eddington became eligible for consideration for the Utah award when he was picked in April as Canyons District’s 2023 Teacher of the Year. At that event, he received a $1,000 prize from the Canyons Education Foundation in front of a 400-person crowd gathered in Hillcrest’s auditorium.
Eddington’s candidacy for the state award was judged against the Teachers of the Year from 41 other Utah school districts.
At the announcement on Thursday, Eddington was hugged and congratulated on the stage by Utah State Superintendent of Public Instruction Dr. Sydnee Dickson. Midvale Middle Principal Mindy Robison, Assistant Principal Courtney Long, and Superintendent Dr. Rick Robins attended the event to celebrate Eddington and the other Teachers of the Year.
This year’s Utah Teacher of the Year winner is Davis School District’s Carly Maloney, who teaches concurrent-enrollment English, Advanced Placement Psychology, and student government.
Other finalists include:
- Amy Anderson, Weber School District
- Kami Elison, Uintah School District.
- Stephanie Parish, Cache School District
The Utah Teacher of the Year receives $10,000 and the right to represent Utah to vie for the national title. According to the Utah State Office of Education, the Utah Teacher of the Year’s mission is to “expand and promote the role of teacher leaders in Utah, supporting retention efforts at the Utah State Board of Education.”
Eddington, whose heartfelt concern for students forms a solid foundation for relationships and learning, “genuinely believes” in his students, says Robison.
“I think the thing that makes Max such an amazing teacher is his ability to connect and care genuinely about students,” Robison said. “I’ve been doing this for 25 years and I don’t know that I’ve ever seen a teacher that has the ability that he has to connect with students, make them feel safe and valued, but most of all, they enjoy math.”
Eddington has attracted attention in Utah education circles for his talents and skills in establishing and building classroom culture. He was featured on the most recent episode of the Utah Education Network’s PDTV. https://www.uen.org/pdtv/. The episode explores “effective classroom management through Mr. Eddington’s approach, centered on creating a supportive classroom culture for student success,” according to UEN.
As the Canyons District Teacher of the Year, Max will be honored with the CSD Apex Award winner for Teacher of the Year. This year’s Apex Awards — the highest awards given by the Board of Education and Administration — are Thursday, Oct. 26 at Alta High’s Performing Arts Center.
The community is invited to the 6:30 p.m. reception and the 7:15 p.m. ceremony. The event is open and free to the public.
“Students are so incredible. They’re so complex and interesting and funny, and there’s just never a boring day. Being a teacher is never boring, and I really love that,” Eddington says. “I love coming home from work knowing that I’ve done something more than just earn money. It feels like a calling. It gives purpose to my life. I don’t think a lot of people can say that about their jobs, and that makes me feel really lucky.”