Indiana State Park Day

INDIANAPOLIS, IN – (Aug. 30, 2021) - The challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic continue to showcase the critical role that Indiana teachers play in their students’ lives, which is why last year all teachers were named Indiana’s 2021 Teachers of the Year. In recognition of this, today the Indiana Department of Education, the 2022 College Football Playoff Indianapolis Host Committee, and the College Football Playoff (CFP) Foundation unveiled a new partnership to celebrate teachers’ immense contributions and elevate them as heroes.

Through this partnership, teachers across Indiana will have access to professional development opportunities and experiences that recognize their extraordinary work and sacrifices during the 2020-21 school year and beyond. Gov. Eric Holcomb, Indiana Secretary of Education Katie Jenner and officials from the Indianapolis Host Committee announced their partnership in a video. Indy will host the 2022 College Football Playoff National Championship, one of the largest sporting events in the world, on January 10, 2022.

“If there’s one thing the last year has taught us, it’s that great teachers change lives,” said Gov. Eric Holcomb. “Indiana is proud to partner with the Indianapolis Host Committee to give all Indiana teachers – our 2021 Teachers of the Year – the recognition they so deserve.” The partnership will honor and celebrate teachers through a series of events, including: 

  • Extra Yard for Teachers Week: Throughout this annual week-long celebration – from Sept. 10-18 – the Indiana college football community will let teachers know they are valued, respected and needed through teacher appreciation events, experiences and giveaways.
  • Extra Yard for Teachers State Park Day: On Sun., Sept. 12, as part of Extra Yard for Teachers Week, all Indiana teachers and their families will have free access to all state parks in Indiana by showing their teacher ID. Five parks – Indiana Dunes State Park, Salamonie Lake, Patoka Lake, Fort Benjamin Harrison State Park, and Brown County State Park – will feature giveaways, live music and food.
  • Who Is Your Indiana Teacher of the Year? As part of Extra Yard for Teachers Week, this social media campaign will encourage Indiana residents to recognize teachers they admire by nominating them with the #INTOY2021 social media hashtag, as well as by submitting an online form. Nominated teachers will receive prizes and recognition.
  • Tailgate Tour: This fall, the Indianapolis Host Committee is traveling to high school football games statewide to cheer on teachers and coaches through the inaugural Indiana Tailgate Tour. The Tailgate Tour kicked off on Fri., Aug. 20 and will continue through the middle of October. The tour will include prizes, games and opportunities for communities to recognize and reward teachers.

Throughout the week leading up to the CFP National Championship in January, teachers will be honored at the Extra Yard for Teachers 5K, the Extra Yard for Teachers Summit and Taste of the Championship, all events whose proceeds go back to the CFP Foundation to support its mission of uplifting teachers.

“Fans will have the opportunity to participate in events that support, recognize and celebrate teachers across the country and in our state,” said Mark Howell, chairman of the Indianapolis Host Committee. “Honoring teachers is one of the many ways that the 2022 College Football Playoff National Championship positively impacts our community.”

As part of the CFP National Championship, the CFP Foundation supports projects in the host city that make a positive impact on education for years to come. The Indianapolis Host Committee and the CFP Foundation made a $1.5 million total contribution to support the Indiana Learning Lab (formerly Indiana eLearning Lab), a free, personalized microlearning platform, and Teach Indy, an effort to recruit and develop high-quality, diverse educators in Indianapolis.

“The Indianapolis Host Committee and Indiana Department of Education’s partnership will help the college football community further recognize and celebrate the transformative power of teachers,” said CFP Foundation Executive Director Britton Banowsky. “These events and celebrations are one way to say ‘thank you’ for all that teachers do daily to make an impact on our students and communities.”


About the Indiana Department of Education

The Indiana Department of Education (IDOE) oversees Indiana primary and secondary schools across Indiana. IDOE is dedicated to providing quality, purposeful educational opportunities for all students to prepare them for lifelong success. For more information, visit

About the 2022 College Football Playoff Indianapolis Host Committee

The 2022 College Football Playoff Indianapolis Host Committee works with the CFP to promote, organize and execute the January 10, 2022, CFP National Championship and its related events in the Indianapolis community. The Indianapolis Host Committee remains committed to a seamless partnership with the CFP and stakeholders to continue making a difference in communities across the state of Indiana after the game and into the future. For more information, visit

About the College Football Playoff Foundation

The CFP Foundation is the community-engagement arm of the College Football Playoff, supporting education across the country. The CFP Foundation’s primary cause platform, Extra Yard for Teachers, is dedicated to elevating the teaching profession by inspiring and empowering teachers in four focus areas: resources, recognition, recruitment, and professional development. The CFP Foundation utilizes multiple partnerships to execute its initiatives and support positive educational outcomes. To learn more, visit and follow Extra Yard for Teachers (@CFPExtraYard) on social media.