Choose Maths Winner Gets Hands On Mentoring Girls in Maths

 In AMSI in the news, Media releases, News

National 2017 AMSI Choose Maths top award winner, Ashley Stewart, believes her Year 8 Living for Learning class is proof hands-on learning works best for indigenous students.

Among recent achievements, the Newton Moore Senior High Schoool girls successfully constructed and tested a hand cranked phone charger.

With NAPLAN 2016 showing 17.4 per cent of Year 9 indigenous students are below national minimum mathematics standards compared to only 2.1 per cent of non-indigenous students, the Newton Moore High School Maths Head’s approach is gaining attention.

The WA based teacher and Head of Mathematics at Newton More Senior High School received this year’s Mentoring Girls in Maths award for fostering engagement of girls, including incorporation of technology and data into interactive learning and leadership of the school’s engineering program. The prize, including $20,000 to be shared with her school, recognises her innovative teaching and leadership in empowering girls and indigenous students in maths.

“Ashley is very deserving of this recognition for her commitment to fostering teacher confidence and mathematical success in and beyond the classroom,” says AMSI Schools Program Manager and Choose Maths Project Director, Janine McIntosh.

A total of ten teachers were recognised at today’s presentation by BHP Chief of Staff to the CEO and Head of Geoscience, Laura Tyler. This year’s Outstanding Teacher awards went to Epping North Public School teacher, Keith Barnett (NSW – Primary) and St Aidan’s Girls’ School Mathematics Head, Patricia Hosking (QLD – Secondary). The pair each received $10,000 with half going to their school’s maths program. Seven Excellence Awards, including $1000, were also presented.

From Coast to Coast: A Showcase of National Classroom Excellence

Now in their second year, the national awards are part of the Choose Maths project, a partnership between the Australian Mathematical Sciences Institute’s and the BHP Billiton Foundation to strengthen mathematics teaching, and foster participation and career awareness of girls and women in mathematics.

The Choose Maths Awards honour teacher excellence and mentorship of girls while the student video awards recognise outstanding learning and creativity.

“From remote and regional cities to the heart of suburbia, the creativity, leadership and innovation of this year’s award winners has set a high bar for Australian mathematics education,” said AMSI Director, Professor Geoff Prince.

Maths Is Our Future: Students Shine on Film

Themed ‘maths is our future’, the 2017 Choose Maths student awards encouraged junior, intermediate and senior student teams to explore real-world application of maths.

Three best video prizes were presented at today’s ceremony in Melbourne, with Tasmania’s Montagu Bay Primary School receiving top junior honours, Ferny Grove State High School intermediate and St Monica’s College Cairns best senior team. As well as a grant to help with travel to Melbourne to attend the ceremony, the teams also received $2000.

An additional seven school teams were presented with $1000 Excellence Awards with Highly CommendedAwards to be presented to a further 20 teams at school assemblies.

With 75 per cent of Australia’s growth employment sectors requiring mathematics, BHP Billiton Foundation Chief Executive, James Ensor, said the awards were an example of the Foundation’s support for initiatives to empower women and girls to embrace these opportunities.

“The BHP Billiton Foundation is excited to help honour outstanding successes in Australian classrooms through these awards. We congratulate the 2017 teacher and student winners for their outstanding achievements,” he said.

The Choose Maths Awards were presented today in Melbourne. Click on the links below for more information and full winners.

 Teacher Winners 2017

Student Winners 2017

For Interview:

2017 Award Winners (after presentation)
Professor Geoff Prince, AMSI Director
Ms Janine McIntosh, Schools Program Manager and Choose Maths Project Director
Mr James Ensor, BHP Billiton Foundation Chief Executive
Ms Laura Tyler, BHP Chief of Staff and Head of Geoscience

Media Contact: Laura Watson
E: media@amsi.org.au
M: 04215 18733
P: +613 9035 3683

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