Gahanna's Mark Daubenmier, a math and computer-science teacher at Columbus Academy, has been selected by the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) as a 2011-12 teacher of the future.

Gahanna's Mark Daubenmier, a math and computer-science teacher at Columbus Academy, has been selected by the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) as a 2011-12 teacher of the future.

"It is a real honor to receive this award by the National Association of Independent Schools," Daubenmier told ThisWeek.

"While I was recognized at this time, all of my colleagues at Columbus Academy who continue to innovate in the field of education also deserve to be honored for the work that they do. It is a real privilege to be a part of such an outstanding team of educators."

The NAIS teachers of the future were selected from a large pool of nominees who inspire academic excellence in students and who serve as opinion leaders among their colleagues and peers.

The teachers of the future also were chosen for their expertise in particular areas - environmentalism, globalism, technology, and equity and justice - which the NAIS views as hallmarks of a high-quality education for the 21st century.

As one of only 20 teachers nationwide chosen for the program, Daubenmier will lead an online discussion forum designed to share innovative ideas and teaching techniques, and he will create a demonstration video to inspire others.

The award recipients will begin their online discussion forums in September and in October will submit their videos about teaching.

Daubenmier has a few ideas for his video, he said.

"It will probably either be about the work that I have been doing in making the classroom content available to students 24/7 by moving all materials and lectures online or about the work that I am doing this year in creating an experimental classroom, where I am investigating if the physical design of the classroom can enhance learning," he said.

The Teachers of the Future program was established in 2007. Over the past few years, a group of 68 innovative teachers shared expertise in teaching through technology, as well as creative ways of teaching.

The Klingenstein Foundation offered NAIS a generous grant for the Teachers of the Future program, and through this grant, each teacher will receive a $1,000 stipend for participating in the program.

The NAIS, based in Washington, D.C., is a voluntary membership organization for more than 1,400 independent schools and associations in the United States and abroad.

Independent schools are distinct from other private schools in that they are independently governed by boards of trustees and are funded primarily through tuition, charitable contributions and endowment income.

Columbus Academy is a coeducational, college preparatory school in Gahanna that is celebrating its centennial throughout 2011.

For more information about the Teachers of the Future program, go to nais.org/go/teachersofthefuture.