Elbert Elementary Teacher Recognized as Outstanding STEM Educator

Derek Hall with his Teacher of the Year certificate.

Elbert Elementary’s Derek Hall has been named the Polk County Teacher of the Year by the Air Force Association (AFA).

The honor, presented by the Martin H. Harris chapter of the AFA, recognizes outstanding science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) teachers in Central Florida. The AFA is a nonprofit, independent military and aerospace education association.

The AFA’s Teacher of the Year candidates are active STEM educators nominated by their principals; winners receive a cash award and are recognized at an annual luncheon. Hall is a fifth-grade science teacher at Elbert Elementary.

“Mr. Hall is a really popular teacher with the kids. They relate to him and learn from him, it’s awesome to see it,” said William Dawson, the school’s principal. “He has a passion for science and makes STEM education come alive. I’m fortunate he’s here teaching science at Elbert Elementary.”