The After School Arts Program, based in Washington, which serves northwestern Connecticut, is accepting applications for the Frank McCourt Prize for Excellence in teaching. The annual award honors the spirit of the late Frank McCourt, who late in life was a Roxbury resident.

Mr. MCourt was for some 30 years a teacher before gaining fame with his Pulitzer Prize-winning memoir "Angela's Ashes," which was followed by "'Tis" and "Teacher Man."

An ardent supporter of ASAP, Mr. McCourt was instrumental in establishing the Celebration of Young Writers, ASAP's major fundraiser each year.

The prize recognizes teachers who have inspired students to become enthusiastic learners by devising imaginative assignments and techniques.

A secondary goal is to find and promote ideas and practices that can be adopted by other teachers.

Public and private school teachers with students who participate in the After School Arts Program are eligible.

Teachers of any subject may nominate themselves or be nominated by others. Names of nominees and their schools should be submitted to ASAP.

The inaugural award was given to local educator Lisa Worth Huber at ASAP's sixth annual Celebration of Young Writers event in 2011. The second annual award was given to Nonnewaug High School art teacher Leeza DesJardins at ASAP's seventh annual event in May.

Applications for the Frank McCourt Prize for Excellence in Teaching must be submitted by April 1.

For more information, call ASAP at 860-868-0740 or email

Applications may be downloaded at