The PCEA is presented by the U.S. Secretary of Education to teachers in the field of cybersecurity to honor their contributions to the education of our nation’s students. The award is bestowed annually to two teachers — one at the elementary level and one at the secondary level — who “demonstrate superior achievement in instilling skills, knowledge, and passion with respect to cybersecurity and cybersecurity-related subjects.” These recipients embody the dedication and expertise of educators who are critical to increasing the cybersecurity awareness of all students, inspiring the nation’s future cybersecurity workforce, and contributing to a more secure society. The award acknowledges both the exemplary achievements demonstrated by the teachers and that of the teacher’s students. The Rules, Terms, and Conditions for the 2023 PCEA are included below. The nomination period closes on September 29, 2023 at 11:59:59 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time.
The 2023 PCEA will be the fourth iteration of the award. The two winners of the inaugural 2020 award were announced in May 2020 and the subsequent two pairs winners were announced in December 2021 and October 2022, respectively. The prior four winners are listed below:
The Presidential Cybersecurity Education Award is bestowed by the United States Secretary of Education (Secretary) on teachers in the field of cybersecurity to honor their contribution to the education of our nation’s students. The award, established by Executive Order 13870 on May 2, 2019, is led by the U.S. Department of Education (Department), in consultation with the National Security Council and the National Science Foundation.
The award is presented annually to two teachers—one at the elementary or middle level (kindergarten through eighth grade) and one at the secondary level—who demonstrate superior achievement in instilling skills, knowledge, and passion with respect to cybersecurity and cybersecurity-related subjects. The award also recognizes teachers who demonstrate superior accomplishment in promoting student academic achievement.
Teachers from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Guam, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and the Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA), and Tribal Nations schools are eligible to apply or be nominated.
Award recipients embody the expertise and dedication of teachers who are critical to increasing the cybersecurity awareness of all students, inspiring the nation’s future cybersecurity workforce, and contributing to a more secure society.
The Administration and Secretary are committed to enhancing the cybersecurity workforce and recognizing the cybersecurity teachers who serve a critical role in the development of America’s future cybersecurity professionals. The United States Government also recognizes the challenges and successes teachers face daily in the highly technical field of cybersecurity education. Therefore, this award highlights the accomplishments of two teachers by providing recognition, such as:
The following definitions are provided for the purpose of this award. Some of the definitions originate from legislation, while others were developed in collaboration with the Federal agencies referenced in the Executive Order establishing this award.
The information provided by either nominators or teachers themselves (self-nominations) is completely voluntary. Anyone, including principals or other administrators; teachers; parents; students; state and local educational agency staff; federal, state, and local elected officials; and the public may nominate exceptional individuals who teach, promote, or inform students about cybersecurity or cybersecurity-related subjects in a public or private elementary or secondary school.
To submit a nomination, the following information is required:
Work information required:
Nominations may be submitted by the same individual or entity for more than one teacher as separate nominations.
Nominations should be submitted to CyberAwards@ed.gov. Once a nomination is submitted, an automated email response will be generated from the Department to confirm receipt to the person who submitted the nomination. Therefore, teachers who are nominated by someone else will not be notified unless they are chosen to receive the Presidential Cybersecurity Education Award.
The nomination period opened on June 15, 2023 and closes on September 29, 2023 at 11:59:59 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time.
Eligibility will be confirmed by Department reviewers. Incomplete nominations will be considered ineligible. Nominators should provide evidence in the narrative format described in the Nomination Process section of this announcement. Documents will be accepted in Microsoft Word (.doc, .docx) or Adobe Portable Document file (.pdf) formats. Please include the teacher’s name, teacher’s contact information, and page numbers on each page of the nomination. If the nomination is being prepared by someone other than the nominee, the nominator is encouraged to work with the nominee to complete the nomination to ensure that the information is reported accurately.
The award is focused on those who demonstrate their abilities teaching students in a variety of methods and environments (classroom, co-curricular, after-school programs, work-based learning, etc.), not only on those who are cybersecurity practitioners. The Executive Order directs the Department to focus on demonstrated teaching accomplishments, and not consider the teacher’s “research, scholarship, or technology development.” Therefore, there is no requirement that information about a teacher’s “research, scholarship, or technology development” be included in the nomination, and such information will not be considered during review and selection.
Each nomination will be evaluated based on the entirety of the document submitted. The following criteria will be used during the review of nominations:
All nominations will be subjected to the following review process:
Please contact CyberAwards@ed.gov.
The Secretary of Education is responsible for administering the Presidential Cybersecurity Education Award, which is authorized under Executive Order 13870.
Privacy Act Statement: The Department’s authority to ask for this information is Executive Order 13870 issued on May 2, 2019. The information provided is voluntary. The main purpose for the information is to make awards. Should nominations not provide the information requested, nominations may be deemed ineligible. The routine use disclosures which may be made of the information will be published in a Systems of Records Notice (SORN) in the Federal Register. The Department will be able to disclose information from this SORN for certain enumerated purposes to specific users without the nominees’ or awardees’ prior written consent pursuant to such routine use disclosures. The routine use disclosures are expected to include disclosures to references listed in applications and nominations in order to permit the Department to determine that applicants and nominees meet the criteria for the Presidential Cybersecurity Education Award, to the general public to announce the awardees, to the media to announce the awardees and to respond to inquiries about them, to government officials to notify them of the awardees in their States or districts, to assist with preparing congratulatory letters, certificates, or other honors, or to schedule events and office visits, to state and local education official to inform them of awardees in their states, districts, or schools, to White House or other Federal agencies for speechwriting and briefings of officials who will be addressing the awardees at events or to obtain needed security clearances at such events, to individuals and entities, such as vendors, in preparation for the awards ceremony or related educational and celebratory activities, to the Department’s contractors as needed to carry out any function of the Department, to members of Congress in response to an inquiry made at the nominee’s or awardee’s written request, to the Department of Justice to obtain advice, to the Department of Justice, parties, counsel, representatives, witnesses, courts, or other adjudicative authorities as relevant and necessary to administrative or judicial litigation, to appropriate parties and entities to respond to a breach of data, to researchers to carry out research on the purposes and functions of the system of records, to law enforcement officials if information in the system of records on its face or in connection with other information indicates that there has been a violation of statute, regulation, or order, and to the Department of Justice or the Office of Management and Budget if the Department concludes that disclosure is desirable or necessary in determining whether particular records are required to be disclosed under the Freedom of Information Act or the Privacy Act.