The Lifetime Service to Mathematics
Education Award recognizes an LATM member for distinguished
service in the field of mathematics education. The award is
designed to recognize an LATM member who has made extraordinary
contributions to the advancement of math education in mathematics
and/or mathematics teaching over a significant period of time.
This award is very select....our
expectations are that this recipient will have contributed to
mathematics education throughout his/her career.... That's a long
time. Let's put this in perspective. What if this person had been
working in mathematics, for over forty years?.... 1975.... Many of
you would not have been born!
Thirty five years ago .....
Still quite a few not born, but our awardee had already achieved a
second degree... Master's degree.... That was only the beginning
of feeling that they had more to contribute to education. In that
endeavor certification was added in computer science, computer
literacy, principal, supervisor of student teaching, Spanish, and
secondary mathematics.... Most of that was completed by 1985.
Whew! Still a few of you not yet born!
By the time I became a member of LATM in
1990 (I know I still have a few 25 years old in this room) our
recipient had been teaching mathematics for over ten years....
During that tenure, this person had already helped to
re-invigorate LATM which was an organization that was almost
extinct. As president of LATM this person co-chaired the first
joint math science conference in 1995 and is co-chairing the 2015
event..... Twenty years later.
Certainly, as I continue to convey what a
"lifetime of Service" entails, you have probably figured our
recipient is Carolyn Sessions. Carolyn served on the Executive
Council of LATM for over 20 years, recently leaving the Council.
However, she didn't leave completely, as evidenced by her
leadership in this conference. She has been a conference chair or
committee chair for several other LATM and joint conference
programs. At various times besides serving as the LATM President
Carolyn has served as the Newsletter Editor, Department of Ed
Representative and State Presidential Awards Coordinator. While
she served as the newsletter editor, the LATM Number Line received
an award from NCTM for its professionalism and delivery of
information to math educators.
Anyone who has
worked on Department of Ed Math committees…standards, item review,
or score setting, has experienced Carolyn’s leadership and
dedication to getting things done and done correctly.
Her role in the development of
the state Grade Level Expectations and then the Comprehensive
Curriculum was followed by the design
of professional development,
the presentations, and finally the re-delivery to teachers and
districts for implementation.
Carolyn led the transition to the Common
Core State Standards (CCSS) in Mathematics. Most math teachers
don't know of her role in developing the summer presentations
given throughout the state or that she created the website of
"Self-Learning Modules." Her reputation led to leadership roles
with the PARCC consortium. Carolyn served as a committee chair
during the early meetings of state committees, national gatherings
and then with the development of the tests for mathematics. She
remained extremely active and dedicated to the process until
Louisiana pulled back from its participation.
At the national
level as a long time NCTM member, Carolyn has had a major role in
multiple NCTM New Orleans Conferences. A member of the Association
of State Supervisors of Mathematics, Carolyn was elected secretary
of the association and served in a leadership position for
A member of the state
Presidential Awards in Excellence in Mathematics and Science
Teaching selection panel Carolyn has served at the invitation of
the National Science Foundation on the National Selection Panel.
Carolyn was a Presidential awardee herself, although I will not
mention the year.
In her time at
the Department of Education Carolyn has worked with hundreds of
teachers of mathematics and district curriculum staff. Daily she
answers questions, finds resources, and assists people in their
work to improve math instruction. She is remembered by former
students for her classroom instruction and outside club
activities. Perhaps most importantly, she is held in high regard
by the parents of her former students for her dedication to
Carolyn is an esteemed educator who truly
deserves an honor of Lifetime Achievement in Mathematics for her
impressive career that has greatly improved the education of
students throughout Louisiana.