JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — A high school journalism teacher in suburban St. Louis has been selected as Missouri's teacher of the year.

Chris Holmes was chosen for the honor by the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. He will now represent Missouri in the national teach-of-the-year competition.

Holmes teaches at Hazelwood West High School, where he helped start a program aimed at keeping at-risk students from dropping out of school.

He also taught in the Clayton School District before joining Hazelwood West eight years ago.