UW–Madison alum is named 2025 Wisconsin Teacher of the Year

UW–Madison alumnus Brian Counselman, a science teacher at Malcolm Shabazz City High School, is one of five educators from across the state who have been named 2025 Wisconsin Teachers of the Year.

Counselman (left) receives his award from State Superintendent Jill Underly.

These educators received the honor for their dedication to the education profession and for the impact they have on their students as learners and individuals. Counselman, who earned his bachelor’s degree in secondary education from the School of Education’s Department of Curriculum and Instruction, was honored with the award during a surprise assembly at his school in late April.

“This group of educators are a tremendous source of inspiration to their students, their schools, and everyone across Wisconsin,” Wisconsin State Superintendent Jill Underly said. “They go above and beyond to support students in many unique ways, providing a safe, inclusive environment for kids to unlock their potential and grow as individuals. It was my honor to travel across Wisconsin to surprise each of them in front of their students, colleagues, and families. I congratulate them on being named Wisconsin Teachers of the Year, and I thank all our state’s incredible teachers for all they do for our students and our communities.”

Counselman has taught science and experimental education at Shabazz, an alternative school in the Madison Metropolitan School District, for the past seven years. He also is the school’s project-based learning coordinator and is credited with creating impactful and meaningful lessons inspiring students to not only make changes in themselves, but also within their respective communities.

“Brian’s innovative teaching methods and project-based learning approaches have not only kindled the curiosity of his students but have also instilled a joy for learning in them,” explains a post on the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction Facebook page.

The post also notes that Counselman’s “tireless dedication to reimagining education and creating opportunities for students to apply their knowledge in practical ways, along with his passion for experiential and outdoor learning, is a testament to his love for transformative teaching.”

Read more about Counselman and this honor in these recent articles from Channel3000 and WMTV 15 News.

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