Ed News: Early STEM Provides Critical Foundation for Future Learning

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This week in education news, a New York City high school entrance exam finds brightest girls do better in STEM classes than on standardized entrance exams; the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation plans to invest in professional development providers; science brief suggests that early STEM experiences provide critical foundation for future learning; new survey finds that students and teachers continue to experience inequitable access to STEM-related classes and resources; 100Kin10 releases its annual STEM and education trends report; report finds that U.S. immigrant children study more math and science in high school and college, which leads to their greater presence in STEM careers; Utah Board of Education releases draft of new state standards for public review; and 30,000 Los Angeles teachers prepare to strike.

The Problem with High-Stakes Testing and Women in STEM

In New York City, there is a big debate over who should gain admittance to eight elite public high schools, including the well-known Stuyvesant High School and the Bronx High School of Science. Currently, Asian-American students score high enough on an entry exam to win a considerable majority of the seats. Mayor Bill de Blasio and a new school chancellor want to bring in more black and Latino students, who make up most of the city’s school population. This tension between demographics and academic excellence is prompting scholars to take a closer look at the data on scores and grades and how well the entry exam predicts achievement. But one researcher thinks the most consistent bias might be against gender. Read the article featured in The Hechinger Report.

Gates Giving Millions to Train Teachers on ‘High Quality’ Curricula

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation plans to invest in professional development providers who will train teachers on “high quality” curricula, the philanthropy announced this afternoon. Read the article featured in Education Week.

Early STEM Provides ‘Critical Foundation’ for Future Learning

It’s time to ramp up STEM in early childhood education, according to the Community for Advancing Discovery Research in Education (CADRE). A new science brief has suggested that quality STEM experiences in pre-K through grade 3 can offer a “critical foundation for learning about these disciplines in ways that facilitate later learning.” Read the article featured in T.H.E. Journal.

Trump vs. Obama: Presidential Strides in STEM Education

Both the Trump and Obama Administrations introduced strategies to boost STEM education across the U.S. How do they compare — and have they been effective? Read the article featured in Education DIVE.

STEM Instruction: How Much There Is and Who Gets It

Despite a push for greater STEM instruction, students and teachers continue to experience inequitable access to STEM-related classes and resources, according to a new survey of 1,200 schools and 7,600 teachers. Read the blog featured in Education Week.

These 5 Trends Will Dominate STEM + Education in 2019

While 2018 was a momentous year for STEM education, with scientists and teachers running for office in unprecedented numbers and a steady stream of news reports on the value of a STEM degree, 2019 is gearing up to be even bigger. 100Kin10 releases its annual Trends Report, a synthesis of thousands of data points that predict trends and “look-aheads” that will define STEM and education in 2019. Read the article featured in Forbes.

Immigrant Kids in U.S. Deliberately Build STEM Skills

U.S. immigrant children study more math and science in high school and college, which leads to their greater presence in STEM careers, according to new findings from scholars at Duke University and Stanford University. Read the article featured in Science Daily.

I Gamified My Classroom and Students Are Soaring

An elementary teacher shares how game-based learning is taking learning to a new level. Read the article featured in eSchool News.

What Utah Kids Learn About Science, Including Climate Change and Evolution, Is Up for Debate of New School Standards

Utah parents and teachers can comment on what students should learn about science — including topics like evolution and global warming that are divisive in this red state — after Thursday’s release of a draft of new instructional standards. Read the article featured in the Salt Lake City Tribune.

All Eyes Are on Los Angeles at 30,000 Teachers Prepare to Strike

Tens of thousands of Los Angeles teachers are planning to take to the picket lines on Monday in a major clash with the nation’s second-largest school district. The lead up to the strike has been messy, with last-minute postponements, a series of legal battles, and tensions between the teachers’ union and the district at an all-time high. The district and union were still in negotiations as of Friday, but few expect them to reach an agreement that would preclude a walkout. Read the article featured in Education Week.

Building a STEM Pathway for Native Students

Kathy DeerInWater of the American Indian Science and Engineering Society discusses the importance of increasing STEM access for Native American students. Read the Q and A featured in edutopia.

Stay tuned for next week’s top education news stories.

The Communication, Legislative & Public Affairs (CLPA) team strives to keep NSTA members, teachers, science education leaders, and the general public informed about NSTA programs, products, and services and key science education issues and legislation. In the association’s role as the national voice for science education, its CLPA team actively promotes NSTA’s positions on science education issues and communicates key NSTA messages to essential audiences.

The mission of NSTA is to promote excellence and innovation in science teaching and learning for all.

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