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Teacher wins $1M prize

A Canadian school teacher who encourages hope and acts of kindness in an isolated corner of Quebec won a US$1 million prize Sunday in what has become one of the most high-profile awards for teaching excellence.

Maggie MacDonnell was awarded the annual Global Teacher Prize during a ceremony in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, beating out thousands of applicants from around the world.

She has worked for the past six years in a remote Arctic village called Salluit teaching middle and high schoolers.

According to her biography, Salluit is home to the second-northernmost Inuit indigenous community in Quebec, with a population of just over 1,300, and can only be reached by air.

MacDonnell said she plans to use the prize money to continue helping the community in Salluit by establishing an environmental stewardship program to reconnect youth with many of their cultural traditions.

She said she hopes the award brings attention to the indigenous communities of Canada and “ideally that they be treated with the dignity that they deserve.’’ (AP)

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