Central Academy Teacher Answers with Questions on Jeopardy


Central Academy teacher Jill Gilbert and Jeopardy host Alex Trebek. Gilbert appears on a special teachers’ edition of the popular game show. (Photo courtesy of Jeopardy! Productions)

DMPS breaking news for five hundred, Alex…

And the answer is: Central Academy 7th and 8th grade English teacher Jill Gilbert…


Who is the DMPS teacher who will appear in the (pre-taped) quarterfinal round of the JEOPARDY! Teachers Tournament that airs next Wednesday, May 4 at 3:30 PM on WHO-TV?

Right you are! Please continue…

Be sure to catch the program. Highly placed sources say that Gilbert is going to make the district proud as she competes for the $100,000 grand prize and a spot in the next JEOPARDY! Tournament of Champions.

We already know that she’s been awarded a $2,500 grant for her classroom as one of only 15 teachers nationwide selected for the tournament.

Before teaching at Central Academy, Gilbert taught at McCombs Middle School, teaching  7th grade math and pre-algebra and 8th grade English.  This is her first year at Central Academy. She received a B.A. in American Studies from Stanford University and an MBA from Columbia University’s Business School. After working in marketing and management, she decided to switch careers and become a teacher, graduating from Drake University in 2012 with an MAT from the School of Education and endorsements in Secondary English, Middle School, and Gifted Education.

“My whole family is made up of teachers,” said Gilbert. “My mom was also a middle school English teacher who began her career at Hiatt Middle School in the 1960s. My dad was an elementary principal and special education teacher. My brother, Paul Sporleder, teaches Social Studies at East High School.  My grandmother and two aunts also were teachers. Alex Trebek joked with me that we’re all in it for the money.”

Stay tuned for some in-depth follow-up after the tournament airs. Until then, good luck, Jill! And remember to put your answers in the form of a question!

UPDATE: Jill Gilbert won during her May 4 appearance on Jeopardy! and moves on to the semifinal round of the show’s Teacher Tournament. Tune in to WHO-TV Channel 13 at 3:30 PM on Tuesday, May 10 to see her compete again.

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