Teacher is finalist for Presidential award

Math teacher Jessica Haskins is congratulated by Dr. Matt Irvin on being a finalist for the Presidential Award for Excellence in Math and Science Teaching.

Math teacher Jessica Haskins is one of two finalists from Missouri for the Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching.

“I was pretty excited and couldn’t contain myself,” Haskins said about receiving the award

Any math or science teacher in the U.S. can apply for the award. According to the National Science Foundation website, each state selects up to three finalists to receive recognition and to forward on to the national level. Winners are recognized at a dinner in November. 

Fellow math teacher Susan Riegel commented on how hard of a worker Haskins is. “She gets here before school starts and stays later,” Riegel said.

Riegel also talked about how much Haskins’ teaching style has evolved over the years. “Ms. Haskins has grown very much in her career here… Now she’s shifted more to ‘what can I do to get kids to understand.’” 

Haskins agreed. 

“I love for kids to play with math,” she said. “I love to have kids explore, discover, talk about math.

Haskins said she is “not 100 percent sure what the next steps are.” 

 At the national level, the NSF selects two finalists from each state to receive the award. Recipients of the award receive a paid trip to Washington D.C., a $10,000 award from the NSF, and a certificate signed by President Donald Trump.

However, selection at the national level takes a long time. “There are still people from 2017 who don’t know if they are national winners yet so I’m not holding my breath,” Haskins said.


Ethan Weihl – Video Editor

This is senior Ethan Weihl’s second year on ECHO Staff. He previously served as News Editor.  He has not decided on college yet, but he wants to major in Political Science, History and/or Journalism.


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