Waterville Teacher Recognized with Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching

April 28, 2011

Governor LePage and Education Commissioner congratulate Laurette Darling

For Immediate Release: Thursday, April 28, 2011 Contact: Adrienne Bennett (207) 287-2531

Augusta, Maine – Governor Paul LePage congratulated Albert Hall School science teacher Laurette Darling on being recognized by President Obama today. Darling is a recipient of the 2010 Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching.

Darling, who lives in Kents Hill, has been an elementary educator for more than two-and-a-half decades and has been at Albert Hall Elementary School in Waterville for four years.

“I am proud that Laurette Darling has been recognized as an outstanding educator in our State,” said Governor LePage. “Science, technology, engineering and mathematics education plays a significant role in enabling the U.S. to remain the economic and technological leader of the global marketplace of the 21st century. By preparing our youth with the skills to succeed in those areas, teachers like Laurette Darling are making our economy more competitive. I congratulate Laurette Darling on this distinguished achievement.”

“This is a prestigious award and a reflection of Ms. Darling’s impressive career,” said Education Commissioner Stephen Bowen. “Nominees for the award undergo a rigorous nomination and review process. The fact that she underwent the process, which many teachers describe as a highly valuable professional development experience, speaks to the kind of teacher she is.”

Darling holds a bachelor’s degree in early childhood education and master’s degree in early childhood education and curriculum instruction from Chicago State University. For the last eight years Darling has participated in the professional development and the leadership of the Maine Science Teachers Association and currently serves as the group’s president.

The Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching is awarded annually to exemplary pre-college-level science and math teachers from across the country. The winners are selected by a panel of distinguished scientists, mathematicians, and educators following an initial selection process carried out at the state level. Each year the award alternates between elementary and secondary education, going either to science and math teachers in grades K through 6 (as it is for the 2010 finalists) or to those teaching in grades 7 through 12.

Winners of the Presidential Teaching Award receive $10,000 awards from the National Science Foundation to be used at their discretion. They also receive an expense-paid trip to Washington, D.C. for a White House awards ceremony and several days of educational and celebratory events, including visits with members of Congress and science agency leaders.

The White House announcement follows:

The White House

Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release April 28, 2011

President Honors Outstanding Math and Science Teachers WASHINGTON, DC -- President Obama today named 85 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 outstanding K-12 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 teachers teaching kindergarten through 6th grade and those teaching 7th through 12th grades. The 2010 awardees named today teach kindergarten through 6th grade.

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 expense-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 the Administration. President Obama has committed to strengthen science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education and prepare 100,000 effective science and mathematics teachers over the next decade.

These commitments build on the President’s “Educate to Innovate” campaign, which has attracted more than $700 million in donations and in-kind support from corporations, philanthropies, service organizations, and others to help bolster science and technology education in the classroom.

“The teachers we honor today have demonstrated uncommon skill and devotion in the classroom, nurturing the young minds of tomorrow’s science and math leaders,” said President Obama. “America’s competitiveness rests on the excellence of our citizens in technical fields, and we owe these teachers a debt of gratitude for strengthening America’s prosperity.”

The recipients of the 2010 Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching are: Alabama Leslie Marshall, Hoover (Math) Susan Ogle, Hoover (Science) Alaska Dorothea Culbert, Eagle River (Math) Mary Janis, Elmendorf Air Force Base (Science) Arizona Jessica Boland, Phoenix (Math) Arkansas Stacey Dominguez, Springdale (Math) Eva Arrington, Monticello (Science) California Kathleen McCarthy, San Leandro (Math) Anne Marie Bergen, Oakdale (Science) Colorado Susan Parsons, Boulder (Math) Patricia Astler, Castle Rock (Science) Connecticut Lori Farkash, Wallingford (Science) Delaware Linda Bledsoe, Middletown (Math)

Department of Defense Education Activity Erika Meadows, Hohenfels, Germany (Math) Lisa Zimmerman, Hohenfels, Germany (Science) District of Columbia Lisa Suben (Math) Lauren Tate (Science) Florida Timothy Kenney, Jacksonville (Math) Megan Tucker, Fort Walton Beach (Science) Georgia Linda Fountain, Augusta (Math) Amanda McGehee, Dunwoody (Science) Hawaii Melanie Ah Soon, Honolulu (Science) Idaho Holly Dee Archuleta, Meridian (Math) Vana Richards, Emmett (Science) Illinois Jill Cheatham, Champaign (Math) Lucretia Weck, Oblong (Science) Indiana Laura Baker, Indianapolis (Math) Alicia Madeka, Hammond (Science) Iowa Barbara Leise, Des Moines (Math) Brandon Schrauth, Johnston (Science) Kansas Angie McCune, Wamego (Math) Claire Overstake, Goessel (Science) Kentucky Charles Rutledge, Grayson (Math) Andrea Broyles, Corbin (Science) Louisiana Paige Falcon, Terrytown (Math) Michelle Morvant, Thibodaux (Science) Maine Laurette Darling, Waterville (Science) Maryland Josepha Robles, Takoma Park (Math) Susan Madden, Davidsonville (Science) Massachusetts Michael Flynn, Southampton (Math) Wai Chin Ng, Boston (Science) Michigan Kathleen Muza, Sterling Heights (Math) Benjamin Jewell, Hudsonville (Science) Minnesota Paulette Saatzer, West St. Paul (Science) Mississippi Kristen Wheat, Picayune (Science) Missouri Elizabeth O'Day, Hallsville (Science) Montana Courtney Niemeyer, Billings (Math) Jon Konen, Great Falls (Science) Nebraska Laura Callahan, Omaha (Science) Nevada Janda Lannigan-Piekarz, Reno (Math) Arlene Hayman, Las Vegas (Science) New Hampshire Stephanie Wheeler, Manchester (Math) New Jersey Kathy Burgin, Mullica Hill (Math) New Mexico Michelle Estrada, Las Cruces (Science) New York Julie Broderick, New York (Math) Gregory Benedis-Grab, New York (Science) North Carolina Amanda Northrup, Clyde (Math) Zebetta King, Raleigh (Science) Ohio Erin King, Felicity (Science) Oklahoma Paige Bergin, Tulsa (Math) Denise Thomas, Tulsa (Science) Oregon Melinda Knapp, Bend (Math) Pennsylvania Gail Romig, State College (Math) Phyllis Glackman, Merion (Science) Rhode Island Beverlee Powell, Warwick (Math) Charlene Tuttle, Jamestown (Science) South Carolina Brook Wiant, Duncan (Math) Mirandi Squires, Johnsonville (Science) South Dakota Constance Ahrens, Rapid City (Math) Deborah Thorp, Lead (Science) Tennessee Jonathan Sheahen, Nashville (Math) Texas Elizabeth Hudgins, Austin (Math) Martha McLeod, Fulton (Science) US Territories Adam Kloper, Charlotte Amalie, Virgin Islands (Math) Utah Linda L'Ai, Logan (Math) Mathilda Uribe, Salt Lake City (Science) Vermont Ann Thompson, Proctorsville (Science) Virginia Victoria Hugate, Moseley (Math) Washington Barbara Franz, Moses Lake (Math) Dawn Sparks, Thorp (Science) West Virginia Michele Adams, Martinsburg (Science) Wisconsin Patricia Agee-Aguayo, Green Bay (Math) John Hushek, Franklin (Science) Wyoming LeAnn Uhling, Saratoga (Math) Rebecca Qualm, Buffalo (Science)