DeRuntz chosen as an Indiana Teacher of the Year Top 10 Finalist

Audrey White, Sandscript Author


(Credited: Robert DeRuntz)


Duneland School Corporation recognizes Robert DeRuntz as a top 10 Finalist for Indiana’s Teacher of the Year (INTOY). After being chosen as DSC Secondary Teacher of the Year in early 2020, the INTOY program was postponed due to COVID-19. The Indiana Teacher of the Year Program works yearly to acknowledge and commemorate teachers statewide. Indiana Teachers of the Year are a group of active and retired educators who encourage the schooling community.


Q : How many years have you been teaching?

A:  “‘This is my 27th year teaching.’”


Q: What inspired you to become a teacher?

A: “‘My father was a steel worker and we had bookshelves filled with history books and maps. My passion for history started with my dad. My 8th grade teacher dressed up in period clothing and my high school history teacher taught us with lectures.’”


Q: Can you describe the process for choosing the Indiana Teacher of the Year?

A: “‘Each year, each school corporation chooses their own elementary and secondary teacher of the year. And then both of those are submitted to the state and every school corp sends two people and there is a pool of hundreds of people.’”


Q: What was your reaction when you saw your name on the Top 10 Finalist list?

A: “‘I was incredibly proud because I know there are so many teachers across the state. Duneland is the only place I’ve ever taught, I was so proud to represent Duneland because I love Duneland.’”


Q: When will the decision be made?

A: “‘Late August to early September for the top 10 to become the top 3. In October they will announce the teacher for the state.’”


Q: What has the process been like since reaching the Top 10?

A: “‘Every teacher had to fill out an extensive application to the state and it was a great deal of work to submit it. When I was selected, all ten of us went to Indianapolis for an interview on the same day. An interview was required in person for the IDOE (Indiana Department of Education) and former INTOY winners. In that interview process I had to deliver a three minute speech from memory and a 30 minute q and a afterwards. That will be used as a basis.’”


Q: What words would you like to share with the teachers at Chesterton High School? 

A: “I would say that any recognition that I have received in the top ten, I feel it is a reflection of the great teachers I have had and for my incredible colleagues at Duneland today.’”


That concludes the interview with Mr. DeRuntz. We would like to offer him our support as the competition narrows down. Congratulations to Mr. DeRuntz for making it to the Top 10 and good luck!