The Michigan Council of Teachers of English has named Kelly Wilson, teacher at Lakeview High School in the Charlevoix-Emmet Intermediate School District, as the 2019 Touchstone Award honoree for Michigan’s Creative Writing High School of the Year

Wilson has been an educator for twenty-five years in both traditional and non-traditional settings. She currently teaches at Lakeview High School, a school that operates as a unique partnership between the Charlevoix-Emmet Intermediate School District and the 7th Probate Court in Emmet County to serve the needs of adjudicated youth. Wilson has designed a curriculum rich with literature and writing projects that encourage, empower, and inspire her students. 

When she learned she was this year’s recipient, Wilson said, “I feel deeply honored to be recognized for valuing above all else a trait that cannot be standardized. I’ve spent my professional life both nurturing and being inspired by the extraordinary creativity of my students. Their courage, honesty, and insight has motivated me to learn and take risks alongside them.”

MCTE’s Touchstone Award is given in conjunction with the Michigan Youth Arts Festival, an annual celebration of student excellence in the arts in Michigan schools. The award recognizes a high school teacher of creative writing who advocates for the arts and who is dedicated to bringing out the very best in students. Touchstone honorees are committed to artistic excellence because they recognize that the arts empower students and give them a lifelong capacity for innovation. 

Wilson is just such an educator. She has collaborated with a local artist to create and display student art and writing at the Crooked Tree Arts Center and the Carnegie Library in Petoskey. Recently, her students engaged in an extraordinary creative writing and nature experience in collaboration with the Little Traverse Bay Conservancy and Good Hart Artist Residency. 

Wilson will be recognized at the upcoming Michigan Youth Arts Festival at Western Michigan University May 9-11, 2019. We encourage local administrators and school boards to recognize MCTE honorees at district gatherings and with local press. 

Founded in 1922, the Michigan Council of Teachers of English (MCTE) is the state affiliate of the National Council of Teachers of English, an organization for K-16 English language arts teachers. MCTE provides professional development for English language arts teachers and English education professors throughout Michigan. The goals of the organization are to disseminate current English education scholarship and assist English language arts teachers as they make decisions about pedagogical practices, student populations, and teaching philosophies. Learn more about the MCTE at