Teacher of the Year

“Without our nation’s veterans, America wouldn’t be the great nation it is today. Our youth deserve to learn about our rich history, traditions and the role of our veterans in creating and shaping America.”

~ National Veterans of Foreign Wars

What is the Teacher Award Program

All entries competing at the Post level must be in the hands of that VFW Post by midnight, Oct. 31, 2023. It is the responsibility of the nominator to meet this deadline by submitting their entry to the proper location by ensuring it is a participating Post.

Founded in 1899, the VFW highly supports the education of America’s youth. VFW and its Auxiliary have developed a slate of programs dedicated to helping America’s educators. VFW Citizenship Education programs stimulate interest in America’s history, traditions, Americanism, civic  responsibility, flag etiquette and patriotism.


Teachers care deeply about America and its children. They’re concerned about the perpetuation of America’s noblest traditions and highest ideals. Wouldn’t you like to see them get the honor they deserve? Now you can.

Teacher Candidate Awards

vfw national citizenship education teacher award program

The Veterans of Foreign Wars wants to identify and recognize America’s best educators who instill a sense of national pride in students. The National VFW Teacher Awards are available for these classification grades:  K-5, 6-8, and 9-12.

Teacher Awards

All entries will begin at the local VFW Post level. Individual nominees may submit their entry directly to the Post. This VFW Post should be within your local area and within your U.S. state of residence. Entries sent to VFW National will be returned. One Post winner can be submitted for each level, and to District by Nov. 15. If your Department does not have a District judging, then submit to your Department Headquarters by Jan. 1. Otherwise, one District winner, at each level, advances to the state (Department) competition.


If you need help finding a participating VFW Post in your area, follow these instructions: First, visit vfw.org/FindaPost to find your local VFW Post.

What Are the Judging Criteria

Citizenship (1-25 points)

On a scale of 1-25, to what extent does the teacher encourage and/or model good citizenship and community involvement?

Innovation (1-25 points)

On a scale of 1-25, how much innovation (new ideas, new tools, new resources, and new approaches) does this teacher utilize in the classroom? Does this teacher’s effort reflect an ongoing desire to stimulate the students with new things?

Resources (1-25 points)

On a scale of 1-25, to what degree has this teacher demonstrated an ability to identify and utilize new and exceptional resources to fund, facilitate and provide materials for his or her classroom? Does this teacher tap into outside agencies, organizations and individuals to acquire materials and expertise in the classroom? As an example – bringing speakers, finding in-kind and monetary donations, or utilizing local opportunities like museums, field trips and local events.

Passion (1-25 points)

On a scale of 1-25,to what degree does this teacher appear to be passionate about the profession of teaching? Are they regularly seeking to upgrade their skills? Do they try and find ways to encourage their students? Do they take a personal interest in their student’s individual success?