Julia Luetkenhaus and Stacey Wade are both eighth grade teachers at Frontier Middle School in the Wentzville School District, and both have been selected as Finalists for the 2017 Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching.
The award is the highest recognition that a K-12 mathematics or science teacher can receive for outstanding teaching in the United States.
Wade teaches mathematics at Frontier and Luetkenhaus teaches science on the same team at the same school. “I am honored to have been selected as a finalist for the PAESMT. Teaching is more than a job, it is calling and a passion,” shared Luetkenhaus, one of only five educators in Missouri to be chosen as a state finalist in science. “I am blessed to be a part of the Wentzville School District where the needs of our students are always our first priority and we work hard to support teachers to be the best instructors that they can be. This is not my honor alone, but one that I share with all of my colleagues who work together to make the Wentzville School District a district of distinction.”
The awards are given to mathematics and science teachers from each of the 50 states and four U.S. jurisdictions. It recognizes those teachers who develop and implement a high-quality instructional program that enhances student learning. “I am honored and humbled to be a finalist,” added Wade. “I am extremely thankful for the resources of time and money that the Wentzville School District has invested in me and my professional learning. I believe it is my responsibility to pay the district back dividends on their investment through hard work, sharing, giving back, and most importantly, by being the best teacher I can be for the students I teach.” Wade is one of only five educators in Missouri to be chosen as a state finalist in mathematics.
Luetkenhaus and Wade represent the fifth and sixth Wentzville School District educators in six years to receive this prestigious recognition for excellence in teaching. Two district educators: Laura Parn and Kathryn Schack, were named recipients of the Presidential Award in 2012 and 2014, respectively.
“Frontier Middle is thrilled to have two wonderful and well-deserving teachers recognized on this distinguished level,” said FMS Principal Jeri LaBrot. “Julia and Stacey pour their heart into their work each and every day, and our Frontier family is exceptionally proud of their achievements.”
The White House will announce the winners next year. Those selected for this Presidential honor will receive a $10,000 award from the National Science Foundation to be used at their discretion. They also are invited to Washington, DC, for an awards ceremony, educational events, and visits with members of Congress and the Administration.
The PAEMST award was established by Congress in 1983, and the program authorizes the President of the United States to bestow up to 108 awards each year. Awardees serve as models for their colleagues, inspiration to their communities, and leaders in the improvement of mathematics and science education. The National Science Foundation administers PAEMST on behalf of The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy.