Two teachers from Mayo who have taken out the Prime Minister’s Prizes for Science are an inspiration for young women, local Federal MP Rebekha Sharkie said today after meeting them at Parliament House.

Dr Samantha Moyle from Kangarilla, who teaches at Brighton Secondary School, received the Prime Minister’s Prize for Excellence in Science Teaching in Secondary Schools on Wednesday night.

At the same gala event Mrs Sarah Finney of Bridgewater, who teaches at Stirling East Primary School, was presented with the Prime Minister’s Prize for Excellence in Science Teaching in Primary Schools.

“It’s clear that Samantha and Sarah are deserving recipients of these prestigious awards,” Rebekha said.

“They are passionate about science and passionate about engaging young people through inquiry-based learning.

“They are an inspiration to all young people but at a time when we know how important it is for our young women to see what they can be, Sarah and Samantha are shining examples of how science can be a rewarding and exciting career choice.”

Sarah Finney has taught at Stirling East Primary School for 13 years and received her award for raising student interest and participation in science and advocating for a strengthened science curriculum in South Australia.

For the past three years, she has conducted an in-depth science inquiry unit for her students, encouraging them to select their own inquiry-based projects and then giving them the opportunity to present their projects to parents and invited scientists.

She encourages her students to take part in the Oliphant Science Awards and she has arranged for astrophysicist Dr Brad Tucker and Dr Karl to attend Q&A sessions.

Dr Samantha Moyle received her award for transforming interactive learning beyond the classroom.

Dr Moyle hosts a Facebook page to promote science and learning. Her YouTube channel shows kids how to write science reports, calculate statistics, choose the best iPad app and learn more about science.

In addition to her Bachelor of Science and Graduate Diploma of Education, Dr Moyle has a doctorate in neuroscience and is currently studying for an associate degree in neuroscience and a Masters of Education in Quantifying Engagement.

Her classroom experiences with inquiry-based learning have given her plenty of quantitative data to use in her Masters’ studies.

Rebekha is pictured at Parliament House with Samantha Moyle from Kangarilla, left, who teaches at Brighton Secondary School and received the Prime Minister’s Prize for Excellence in Science Teaching in Secondary Schools, and Sarah Finney of Bridgewater, who teaches at Stirling East Primary School and was presented with the Prime Minister’s Prize for Excellence in Science Teaching in Primary Schools.