Thomas Soth, a Spanish teacher at Northwest Guilford High School in Greensboro, North Carolina, was named the 2012 SCOLT Regional Teacher of the Year. Each state in the 13-state SCOLT region may send one state language Teacher of the Year to the regional competition. He was selected on the basis of his excellent teaching portfolio, letters of recommendation and an interview. Tom will now advance to the national competition sponsored by the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL). During the ACTFL Convention in Philadelphia in November, he and four other regional teachers will vie for the title of ACTFL National Language Teacher of the Year. The teacher selected in November will serve as the national spokesperson for language learning in 2013.
Tom received his B.A. from the University of Georgia at Athens in English and Spanish and his M.Ed. in Spanish from the University of North Carolina, Greensboro. He teaches Spanish levels 1-4 as well as AP Spanish Language and AP Spanish Literature. In 2006, he received National Board Certification and is both co-department chair and a teacher mentor at his school. Tom has additionally taught courses at the University of North Carolina, Greensboro. He is a former president of the Foreign Language Association of North Carolina (FLANC), and is as an experienced presenter at local, state and regional conferences. When asked about the value of foreign language learning, Tom states: "I believe that the learning of language and culture is necessary for all 21st century citizens because language and culture skills are the skills needed to actively participate in the modern village, nation, and world. Active participants must be able to fuse critical thinking with communication and collaboration so that creativity can be shared and spark greater innovations that will help all people."
Tom is an active member of several professional organizations including the FLANC, Southern Conference on Language Teaching (SCOLT), the National Education Association (NEA), the American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese (AATSP), and the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL).