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May 18, 2007
by: NORA FROESCHLE World Staff Writer
(Reprinted with Permission. This is not an endorsement.)
Betsy Glad's students all asked for her autograph when they found out that she had been selected to receive an award for teaching excellence from President Bush.
"And they asked for the president's," Glad said in a telephone interview from Washington, D.C., where she received the award Thursday evening.
Glad is a third-grade teacher at Cedar Ridge Elementary School, 9817 S. Mingo Road, in the Union school district.
She is one of two Oklahoma teachers, and 93 in the nation, who were honored with the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching.
"I'll tell you, I'm still pinching myself," Glad said. "It's the highlight of my teaching career."
Cedar Ridge Principal Ellen Crager nominated Glad for the award and said she debated about which subject to nominate her for, because Glad is good at all of them.
"She's an outstanding teacher," Crager said. "When you walk in and they're doing some great activity and they're on fire for what they're doing, then you know the classroom strategies are working."
It is Glad's hands-on activities that keep her 22 students excited about math, and when she asks what their favorite subject is, she is thrilled to hear "math" from many of them.
"That's totally the opposite of the way I used to feel when I was growing up," Glad said. "They are so enthusiastic. They can explain their thinking, and they actually know how they got the answer and why the answer is right."
After a week in the nation's capital that included dinner at the State Department, Glad said she feels like she has been treated like royalty.
"I feel like I'm representing all of the teachers in Oklahoma," she said.
Stacy Darling, who teaches at Eisenhower Elementary School in Norman, is the other Oklahoma recipient of the award.