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Charter school teacher named Minnesota Teacher of the Year

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Abdul Wright
Abdul Wright, 29, a teacher at The Best Academy in Minneapolis, accepts the 2016 Minnesota Teacher of the Year award in Bloomington on Sunday.
Matt Sepic | MPR News

A Minneapolis charter school teacher has been named the 2016 Minnesota Teacher of the Year.  

Abdul Wright teaches eighth-grade language arts at The Best Academy in Minneapolis. He's the 52nd recipient of the award, and the first-ever charter school teacher to win it.  

The awards are sponsored by the teachers union Education Minnesota. Wright was selected from a field of 11 finalists by an independent committee representing Minnesota leaders in education, business and government. The winner was announced Sunday at a banquet in Bloomington.  

Wright says in a statement that respect is at the center of his values and beliefs as an educator. He says he tries to teach his students that they have to be a model of excellence for the community they want, not the community they see.