The Presidential Award brings a deeply personal sense of accomplishment. The thought of being recognized for doing what you do every day to promote learning is an honor. I have spent my career teaching and learning simultaneously, always seeking new opportunities to better myself in the classroom. This award is a validation of the time and effort put into educating students. It reminds me of the tremendous responsibility I must uphold: The standards of excellence for which I've been honored.

Rochelle Settles Lincoln, NE | K-6, Science, 2018

The official biography below was current at the time of the award.

Rochelle Settles has been an educator at Fredstrom Elementary School for all 25 years of her career. She has spent the last 17 teaching science to students kindergarten through fifth grade. Rochelle has spent numerous hours studying best classroom practices, lesson design, writing curriculum, editing state standards, and designing assessments. She serves as a storyline writer and test item creator for the State of Nebraska's assessment administered to all fifth graders in the state. Rochelle's passion for hands-on science inquiry learning goes beyond the classroom. Her leadership is evident as the Director of the Zoetis-Lincoln Public Schools-Glaxo Smith Kline science fair, a collaboration of community members, volunteers, and exhibitors providing opportunities for over 400 students to display projects. Rochelle has served as Adjunct Instructor at the University of Nebraska in Lincoln teaching elementary science methods to preservice teachers for three years. Rochelle's garden and science clubs engage students in exciting activities. One day each week after school she hosts a club, providing opportunities for students to pursue and investigate interests of their choosing. Rochelle earned a B.A. in elementary and special Education and a M.A. Ed. in curriculum and instruction from the University of Nebraska at Lincoln. She is certified in elementary and special education.