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Local teachers exalted 

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Four of six teachers named as finalists for the Colorado Department of Education's 2017 Teacher of the Year award are from the Pikes Peak region.

Two are from Colorado Springs School District 11. They are Carla Raetz, a 20-year teacher who's been the English Language Learning (ELL) lead teacher for eight years at Carver Elementary, and Sean Wybrant, who's taught for 11 years, with the past four years as the Career and Technical Education teacher at Palmer High.

Another nominee is Jeremy Beckman, an 11-year math teacher who also coaches speech and debate at Discovery Canyon High in Academy School District 20.

The fourth is Melanie Holts, who has 20 years' experience and teaches second grade at Falcon Elementary School of Technology in School District 49.

The winner, to be announced by Nov. 1, becomes the Colorado nominee for National Teacher of the Year honors.

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