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Four teachers, all honored as teachers of the year in their states, have been named finalists in the 1983 National Teacher of the Year Program.

They are: LeRoy E. Hay, a teacher of English at Manchester High School, Manchester, Conn.; Harriet Donofrio, a biology teacher at Cape Henlopen High School, Lewes, Del.; M. Gene Ulrich, a science teacher from North High School, Sioux City, Iowa; and Nancy O'Donnell, a third-grade teacher at Perry Elementary School, Perry, Okla.

The contest is sponsored by the Council of Chief State School Officers, the Encyclopaedia Britannica Companies, and Good Housekeeping Magazine. The finalist will be named early this year and honored at a White House ceremony in April.

Michigan School Superintendent Phillip Runkel was sentenced to a year's probation last week following his conviction on charges of driving while intoxicated. Mr. Runkel pleaded guilty to the charge. He was also fined $200 in court costs and ordered by Lansing District Judge James Wood to participate in an alcohol-safety program.

Mr. Runkel, 54, was arrested last Nov. 8 and charged with driving under the influence of alcohol after his state-owned car was pulled over by the Lansing police for speeding.

He had been returning home from dinner in a downtown restaurant and spent seven hours in the city jail before being released on a $100 personal-recognizance bond.

The charge was later reduced to "driving while impaired."

Mr. Runkel, who became Michigan superintendent in 1980, is in the first year of a three-year contract.

State officials said the conviction will probably not reduce the strong support he received from the State Board of Education.

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