A Mississauga high school teacher has received a national award for excellence.

Diana Wang-Martin, of Glenforest Secondary School, has been  honoured with the Prime Minister’s Award for Teaching Excellence. The award is considered Canada’s highest teaching honour and recognizes excellence in the area of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).

Wang-Martin has been teaching at the Peel District School Board for 12 years and has been involved in a number of initiatives. She formed a partnership with the University of Waterloo where Glenforest students have science projects evaluated by university staff. Wang-Martin also spearheaded the school’s STEM club to raise funds for student conferences. As well, she has been guiding students in a robotics program where high school students mentor those in younger grades.

Wang-Martin received the award in Ottawa, where she had the opportunity to meet other award recipients.

She says, as well as teaching the academic content, her goal is to provide students with opportunities and platforms to develop the skills they will need to succeed in the future.

“Technology is changing the world around us and learning rote knowledge can be done anywhere and anytime with a computer,” she said. “However, the intricacies of soft skills, such as communication, leadership and collaboration, require practice and these skills cannot be acquired through textbooks or traditional class lessons.”

Photo: Diana Wang-Martin, winner of the Prime Minister’s Award for Teaching Excellence.

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