Mechanicsburg, PA, October 17, 2018 – The Pennsylvania School Boards Association (PSBA) honored outstanding recipients of the Pennsylvania Education Innovation Awards at a special awards dinner on Oct. 17 as part of the 2018 PASA-PSBA School Leadership Conference at the Hershey Lodge & Convention Center. The award, in its second year, recognizes innovative leadership in public school board governance, administration and teaching and is sponsored by CM Regent and CM Cares.

This year's honorees include:

  • Innovative Teacher Award: Timothy Heffernan, High school gifted support teacher, Franklin Area High School, Venango County
  • Innovative School Leader Award: Khalid N. Mumin, Ed.D., Superintendent, Reading School District, Berks County
  • Innovative School Board Award: Cumberland Valley Board of School Directors, Cumberland County

“We are proud to sponsor the Public Education Innovation Awards,” said Rich Poirier, president and CEO of Church Mutual Insurance Company. “CM Regent and CM Cares, the Church Mutual Insurance Company foundation, believe strongly in the mission of our public schools, and we are excited to be part of highlighting innovation of school leaders.”

“The Pennsylvania Education Innovation Awards are an opportunity for us to recognize the commitment to education excellence in public schools around the state,” said Nathan Mains, CEO, Pennsylvania School Boards Association. “There continues to be inventive and evolving approaches to the student experience and educational environments in our commonwealth, and we are pleased to create recognition for these individuals and groups responsible.”

Timothy Heffernan is a high school gifted support teacher for the Franklin Area High School in Venango County, and a robotics enthusiast. He developed a partnership with VEX Robotics, a company that creates tools for educators and mentors to use in shaping the learners of today and the problem-solving leaders of tomorrow.

Heffernan’s students built robots to compete in a regional competition, which he hosted at the Franklin Area High School with 10 nearby school districts and the Technology Center. Hosting it

solved geographic and financial challenges. He also wrote a matching grant for the purchase of VEX Robotics kits for our junior high school and all of the district’s elementary schools. Heffernan brings innovation through robotics and STEM education not only to his own district, but fosters this innovative spirit through partnerships with nearby schools

Dr. Khalid N. Mumin, Superintendent, Reading School District in Berks County was named in 2016 by the National School Public Relations Association as one of 24 “Superintendents to Watch,” Dr. Mumin has articulated five areas of focus to prioritize his work as Superintendent of the Reading School District: (1) safe schools, (2) academics, (3)communications/engagement, (4) partnerships, and (5) financial/organizational effectiveness. Specifically, his work centered on communication has been key for the district to successfully achieve innovative progress.

Known district-wide as an effective facilitator and successful consensus-builder, Dr. Mumin promotes team-building for a harmonious environment and utilizes data analysis to measure continuous progress toward district goals

On August 16, 2018, Pennsylvania Auditor General, Eugene DePasquale held a press conference with Dr. Mumin and stated, the strides the Reading School District has made is “the most miraculous turnaround in a school district he has ever seen in his career as an Auditor General”.

Mumin’s dynamic leadership focuses on necessary staff development for instructors to meet the ever-changing needs of students so they can compete in a competitive career market

Cumberland Valley School Board in Cumberland County adopted a graduation policy in June 2018 focusing on preparing students for a variety of post-high school experiences. As the culmination of the district’s educational program providing academic and experiential pathways, students graduate with skills that fulfill Pennsylvania Academic Standards, needs of employers, entry requirements for post-secondary trade and technical schools and the military, prerequisites for a myriad of institutions of higher education.

Cumberland Valley School District’s educational programs connect students to the economy through viable pathways for life-long learning, preparing every graduate to compete in a highly-skilled work force of critical and creative thinkers who can utilize technology to solve problems and communicate solutions

Cumberland Valley School Board works in conjunction with administration and within existing structures to increase student success, bolster educators’ efforts, and facilitate community involvement in the district’s educational program


  PSBA is a nonprofit statewide association of public school boards, pledged to the highest ideals of local lay leadership for the public schools of the commonwealth. Founded in 1895, PSBA was the first school boards association established in the United States.

Media Contact:
Annette Gray
Director of Communications

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