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North Middle Librarian Gets Surprise Check

Barry Crook is the newest Peabody Energy Leaders in Education award winner.

North Middle Librarian Gets Surprise Check

The following article was submitted by the .

Barry Crook, Library Media Specialist at , was named a Peabody Logos Leader in Education for the 2011-12 school year, and awarded $1,000 for his compassion and commitment to students.

On Tuesday, he was surprised by Maureen Moore, of Peabody Energy, who presented him with a large check as the newest Peabody Energy Leaders in Education award winner. Crook was unaware of what was happening.

“I saw some kids and Mr. Cochran come in to the library and thought, what’s going on?  Is there a fire drill?  Then I saw everyone smiling and the TV camera and figured out it was for something good,” Crook said.

NKMS principal Tim Cochran said Crook was very deserving of this award.

“Barry is progressive in his thoughts and collaborative in the process," Cochran said. "He is well respected by the staff. He not only has great ideas, but he’s willing to do the work to make it happen.”

As a Library Media Specialist, Crook helps students take control of their own education. He encourages them to expand their learning beyond the classroom by reading on their own, asking questions and exploring places of learning like museums and historic sites.

His personal love of reading is contagious, and each year he pledges to read 100 books and often inspires his students to do the same. As an academic coach, Crook collaborates with teachers and introduces them to new technology and best teaching practices. Crook shares his expertise beyond his school. He has served on the Science Teachers of Missouri board, and is the current chairperson on the Missouri Association of School Librarians.

Crook has been an educator for 18 years. He has taught at North Kirkwood for 10 years, six of those as a science teacher and four years as the school’s library media specialist. Crook completed his master’s and bachelor’s degrees at Truman State University.

The Peabody Logos Leaders in Education program rewards dedicated education professionals—from teachers and coaches to librarians and counselors—who inspire and motivate youth to succeed. A committee of top educators and business leaders selects award recipients throughout the school year.

“Barry Crook is a leader in education and helps his students explore their world through books, technology and field investigations,” said Vic Svec, Senior Vice President of Investor Relations and Corporate Communications for Peabody Energy. “Peabody created the Leaders in Education program to give outstanding educators like Barry the recognition they deserve.”

In partnership with Logos School, the Leaders program was developed in Missouri in 2009, and reflects Peabody’s commitment to make a positive impact in the communities where the company’s employees live and work by honoring those who inspire students.

The 2011-2012 award program is continuing to accept nominations and is open to educational professionals of public, private and independent schools in designated communities where Peabody Energy employees live and work. Nominations may be made at www.PeabodyEnergyLeadersInEducation.org. 

Crook was amongst 394 nominees and one of 30 selected for Peabody Energy Leader in Education award. As a Leader in Education honoree, he is eligible for an additional $5,000 award that will be announced at the Leader in Education reception in August.

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