The AEF® A+ School of Excellence® Award program began in 1983 as a way to identify, celebrate, and recognize educational excellence in schools throughout Arizona.The A+ School of Excellence® award is a powerful energizer for increasing public confidence in recognized schools, often resulting in greater parent and community involvement and even serves as an economic driver for some communities. A+ Schools are celebrated and recognized as exceptional.
Since 2001, the Arizona Educational Foundation has served as the sponsor of the state Arizona Spelling Bee, a showdown pitting Arizona's top 27 spellers from across the state in a spectacle of spelling sport! The Arizona Spelling Bee Champion goes on to represent the State of Arizona in the Scripps National Spelling Bee.
Each year, AEF® spotlights the contributions of ten outstanding public school teachers throughout Arizona. One is named the AEF® Arizona Teacher of the Year® and represents the state in the National Teacher of the Year competition. Four finalists are named Ambassadors for Excellence and the remaining five are Semi-Finalists.
The top ten are honored each Fall at the annual Teacher of the Year® Awards where the winner is announced.
AEF® Our World program is a ground-breaking initiative that provides training and workshops on equity, diversity, inclusion (DEI) for educators, businesses, nonprofits, and higher education. Our World was created to assist schools, school districts, nonprofits, and businesses with fulfilling commitments they made to adopt more equitable practices. Training is designed and facilitated by Arizona Teachers of the Year® and higher education partners.
The AEF® Principals Leadership Academy of Arizona (PLAA) is one of the only administrator prep programs in the state of Arizona for aspiring school leaders and first-year principals. Curriculum is designed and facilitated by A+ School of Excellence principals and district administrators as well as state education leaders.
The AEF® Principals Leadership Academy of Arizona (PLAA) is designed to help guide and launch aspiring school leaders and new principals into leadership success!
AEF® Take Your Legislator to School (TYLTS) is a unique collaboration which pairs Arizona teachers with Arizona local state legislators who spend a full day in a public school classroom. This partnership facilitates meaningful conversation between policy makers and educators and gives state legislators an intimate look at the day-to-day realities of public schools in Arizona.
Arizona Educational Foundation's teachSTEM initiative is a groundbreaking program designed to address Arizona's critical STEM teacher shortage by motivating junior high and high school students to pursue teaching degrees in STEM. teachSTEM is an early intervention, that not only provides access to STEM learning for students, but also builds awareness about the need for STEM teachers and job opportunities within mainstream STEM fields.