Karla Digmann, an eighth-grade math teacher at George Washington Middle School in Dubuque, was among 97 mathematics and science teachers named by President Obama as recipients of the prestigious Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching. Digmann and the other recipients will receive their awards in Washington, DC later this month. With this recognition, she joins three other previous Presidential Award recipients who currently work in the Dubuque Community School District.

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 sixth grade and those teaching seventh through 12th grades. The 2011 awardees named today teach seventh 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 are invited Washington, DC, for an awards ceremony and several days of educational and celebratory events, including visits with members of Congress and the Administration.

“Mrs. Digmann inspires and motivates a diverse population of students to learn the concepts of math,” said Mark Burns, principal at Washington Middle School. “She is so humble, I am not sure she even realizes the full impact she has had on her students. She always puts students first and has helped transform and further develop both veteran and novice teachers. I have the utmost respect for her and her abilities as a teacher and a leader.”

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.

“America’s success in the 21st century depends on our ability to educate our children, give our workers the skills they need, and embrace technological change. That starts with the men and women in front of our classrooms. These teachers are the best of the best, and they stand as excellent examples of the kind of leadership we need in order to train the next generation of innovators and help this country get ahead,” said President Obama.

For more information, contact the DCSD School and Community Relations Office at (563)552-3020.