The Presidential Award is a recognition of teachers who are passionate about education and deeply reflective of their practices. Award recipients have the students’ best interests at heart and work with the support of family, colleagues, and community. They work diligently to improve science literacy and model the process of continuous learning. The Presidential Award provides opportunities to these exemplary teachers to enact real educational changes. I am honored to have received this award.

Elegan Kramer Saint Louis, MO | 7-12, Science, 2019

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

Elegan Kramer has been an educator for 14 years. She currently teaches 11th-12th grade Advanced Placement Physics 1 and Principles of Physics at Parkway North High School, where she has taught for 13 years. She has also taught astronomy, biology, chemistry, physics, and physical science at Parkway North. Previously, she taught eighth grade science at Columbia Public Schools for one year. Elegan enjoys incorporating real-world applications in her classes, models the process of scientific discovery and engineering in class, and encourages her students to work collaboratively. In the last few years she has worked with other educators in the district to create a new physics class based upon these educational ideas and is teaching this new class as of 2020. Each year she takes her students to a local amusement park to participate in experiments and to collect data with sensors on various rides. Her students also participate in the annual St. Louis Area Physics Teachers (SLAPT) high school physics contest at Washington University in St. Louis. Elegan is an active member of SLAPT and was its president from 2018 to 2020. She also recently accepted the offer to be an Ambassador for STEP UP (Supporting Teachers to Encourage the Pursuit of Undergraduate Physics). As a STEP UP Ambassador, she will empower teachers to inspire young women to pursue physics. Elegan earned a B.S. in secondary education-unified chemistry and a M.Ed. in curriculum and instruction as a teaching fellow from the University of Missouri at Columbia. She is certified in physics 9–12, unified chemistry 9–12, and general science 5–9. She also is a National Board Certified Teacher in science/early adolescence.