My name is Bret Dockter, and I am the 2022 North Dakota Teacher of the Year. My platform this year has been on teacher recruitment and retention. As I have traveled across the state and nation this year, it has become clear to me that while many are leaving our profession, there are even more great and influential educators that are making a difference.

Bret Dockter

To celebrate and share all of you, I invite you to send a short 30-40 second video clip on “Why I am staying in education.” (Videos can be longer) Send clips to If you choose to participate, we will use your clip as part of a video tribute during American Education Week in November and again for Teacher Appreciation Week in May.

Also for sending me your “Why,” you will also receive a copy of Simon Sinek’s book “Start With Why.”

In addition, if you are interested in being considered for being included on an educator podcast, please fill out the attached form on “Why I am staying in education.” Here is the link: Four educators will be chosen and featured and will receive a stipend. The deadline for submissions will be Sept. 30 so that we can prepare for American Education Week.

As educators we often hesitate to share our stories because we are not in this career to promote ourselves. However, our stories are powerful, inspirational, need to be shared, and may be just what another colleague needs to hear. Thanks for considering this and for all you do for the great kids of North Dakota!