A North Gwinnett Middle School teacher is a finalist for the highest recognition a kindergarten through 12th grade science, technology, engineering or mathematics teacher may receive for outstanding teaching in the United States — the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching.
Heather Wheeler, who teaches science, is one of only six state finalists for the award.
“Mrs. Wheeler’s dedication to her students and tireless efforts to promote excellence in mathematics and science education make her an exemplary educator,” said Sherri Gilbert, North Gwinnett Middle School principal. “Her innovative teaching methods, commitment to professional growth, and the positive impact she has on her students’ lives make her highly deserving of this recognition.”
Sponsored by the National Science Foundation, the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching recognizes teachers with deep content knowledge in their subject areas and the ability to motivate and enable students to succeed in those areas.
According to the NSF, “The award recognizes those teachers that have both deep content knowledge of the subjects they teach and the ability to motivate and enable students to be successful in those areas.”
More than 5,200 teachers have been recognized for their contributions in the classroom and to their profession since the program’s inception in 1983.
As a state finalist, she now advances to the national level of the Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching selection process. A panel of mathematicians, scientists, educators and other experts will review her teaching portfolio, accomplishments and contributions to the field. The NSF will announce the final awards recipients during a ceremony in Washington, D.C. Winners will receive a $10,000 award from the NSF, a certificate signed by the president and a paid trip to Washington, D.C., to attend a series of recognition events and professional development opportunities.