Wando High biology teacher earns 2008 federal American Star recognition

September 30, 2008

MOUNT PLEASANT – September 30, 2008 – Wando High School biology teacher Ruth Truluck was honored today as South Carolina’s 2008 No Child Left Behind American Star of Teaching.

American Stars is a federal program that recognizes superior teachers with a track record of improving student achievement, using innovative instructional strategies and making a difference in the lives of their students.

U.S. Deputy Secretary of Education Raymond Simon congratulated Truluck during surprise ceremonies at the school in Mount Pleasant.  The award is presented to one teacher in each state and in the District of Columbia.

“Ruth Truluck displays commitment and skill in helping all her students,” said Principal Lucy Beckham, who submitted the award nomination.  “She also mentors her colleagues and serves as our science department head.”

Beckham said Truluck gives assignments that connect students’ science studies to real-world applications, such as using crushed strawberries and ethanol to study the structure of DNA or developing presentations that show the impact of human activities on the environment. 

“She wants every student to achieve, from the ones struggling in the bottom five percent of the freshmen class to those in her Advanced Placement courses,” Beckham added.

The American Stars of Teaching program began in 2004 and honors educators across all grade levels and subject areas.  A committee of former teachers at the U.S. Department of Education selects American Stars from among 5,000 nominations annually.

The program is part of the government’s Teacher-to-Teacher Initiative that includes regional and district workshops, roundtables for teachers and principals, regular e-mail updates and digital learning.