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Great Neck teacher to get 'Live' closeup

John Motchkavitz, a technology teacher and coach at

John Motchkavitz, a technology teacher and coach at Great Neck South High School, was named a Top 5 finalist in the "LIVE with Kelly and Michael" Top Teacher Contest on Tuesday, April 29, 2014.

A Long Island teacher will get his closeup on "LIVE with Kelly and Michael" next month.

Hosts Kelly Ripa and Michael Strahan announced the five finalists in this year’s Top Teacher Contest on Tuesday's show, and John Motchkavitz, a technology teacher and coach at Great Neck South High School, was one of them.

Motchkavitz said he was watching Tuesday’s show with his colleagues, students and his son Ryan, a Great Neck South freshman, when his name was announced.

The finalists will be brought on the show the week of May 12, before online voting  determines the Top Teacher. The winner, who will be unveiled May 20, will take home a 2015 Ford Escape.

Another Long Island teacher, Lynnette Carr-Hicks, a music teacher and show choir director at Uniondale High School, was among the 12 semifinalists selected by producers, but she did not advance to the next round.

The show had asked viewers to nominate teachers who made a difference. Viewers were then asked to vote for finalists from last Friday through Monday evening.

In addition to teaching technology classes, Motchkavitz also oversees the school’s business club and robotics team, coaches lacrosse, builds sets for school plays, and four times a year, he brings students to New York City to distribute food, clothing and blankets to the homeless.

He said an ABC representative told him that a film crew would follow him around school for the day to create a video package.

Motchkavitz said he is grateful for everyone who voted for him, and proud to be representing not only Great Neck South, but all educators who teach elective courses.

“With everything that’s going on in education, it’s great to see something like this is being celebrated,” he said. “It really solidifies the need for classes that are electives, that let kids try things and find career paths.”

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