President Obama today named 103 mathematics and science teachers as recipients of the prestigious Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching. The educators will receive their awards in Washington, D.C. later this year.
The Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching is awarded annually to the best pre-college-level science and mathematics teachers from across the country. The winners are selected by a panel of distinguished scientists, mathematicians, and educators following an initial selection process done at the state level. Each year the award alternates between mathematics and science teachers teaching Kindergarten through 6th grade, and those teaching 7th through 12th grades. This year it goes to teachers teaching 7th through 12th grades.
Winners of this Presidential honor receive a $10,000 award from the National Science Foundation to be used at their discretion. They also receive an expenses-paid trip to Washington, D.C. for an awards ceremony and several days of educational and celebratory events, including visits with members of Congress and science agency leaders.
Last spring at the National Academy of Sciences, President Obama called on all Americans to join the effort to elevate science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education as a national priority. The President’s public-private “Educate to Innovate” initiative, which was launched last fall, has attracted more than $500 million in donations and in-kind support from corporations, philanthropies, service organizations, and others to help inspire students to pursue studies and careers in math and science. Last month, Cabinet officials and others in the Federal government answered the President’s call to action by volunteering in local classrooms as part of National Lab Day, a nationwide initiative to build local communities of support for teachers and students studying mathematics and science.
“Science and technology have long been at the core of America’s strength and competitiveness, and the scientists and engineers who have led America on its remarkable path to success share something very precious: science and math teachers who brought these critical subjects to life,” said President Obama. “Today we honor some of the best of these teachers and thank them for their dedication. They are inspirations not just to their students, but to the Nation and the world.”
A few individuals receiving the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching this year, including our area, are:
District of Columbia/Yvette Yamagata, Washington (Math);
Florida/Michelle Voelker, Defuniak Springs (Math), Allan Phipps, Plantation (Science), Georgia/Christopher Harrow, Atlanta (Math), Rachael Parr, Commerce (Science); Hawaii/Yannabah Lewis, Kailua-Kona (Math), John Constantinou, Kea'au (Science); Idaho/Kim Zeydel, Meridian (Math), Marian DeWane, Boise (Science); Illinois/Paul Karafiol, Chicago (Math), Jason Crean, La Grange (Science); Indiana/
Janice Mitchener, Carmel (Math), Deanna York, Indianapolis (Science); Iowa/Matthew Miller, Cedar Rapids (Math), Jessica Gogerty, Des Moines (Science); Kansas/Cynthia Couchman, Buhler (Math), Bruce Wellman, Lawrence (Science); Maryland/Kimberly Burton-Regulski, Essex (Math);Radhika Plakkot, Huntingtown (Science); Virginia/Kimberly Morrow-Leong, Bristow (Math), Dat Le, Arlington (Science);
West Virginia/ Cynthia Burke, Wheeling (Math), Rebecca Jones, Lumberport (Science).