Ed News: How Can We Get More Highly Effective Teachers to Serve as Mentors?

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This week in education news, state school board committee approved new science standards for Utah public school students; states are beginning to integrate CTE and STEM-related courses into high school graduation requirements; despite evidence suggesting that high-quality instructional materials increase student new science curriculum; researchers argue that policymakers should be willing to invest roughly 15 times more to encourage effective teachers to become mentors; and Harvard economist says we’re losing Einsteins every day.

Proposed Science Standards Head to State School Board

A State School Board committee approved new science standards for Utah public school students in grades K through five and nine through 12, but not before some pushback on the teaching of evolution and climate change. Except for some slight tweaks, the proposed standards were approved by the Standards and Assessment Committee and will be considered for adoption at an upcoming State School Board meeting. Read the article featured in the Deseret News.

Diploma Requirements Still Out of Step with Higher Ed Eligibility in Most States

States are beginning to integrate career and technical education (CTE) and STEM-related courses into high school graduation requirements, and some are also revising diploma pathways to link coursework to postsecondary goals, but the updates fall short of ensuring credits earned make students eligible for admission to colleges and universities, according to a new paper from the Center for American Progress (CAP). Read the article featured in Education DIVE.

How Districts Can Improve Learning Through High-Quality Curriculum

States and districts have been slow to implement high-quality instructional materials and the training to use them, despite evidence of the positive impact on learning outcomes. Read the article featured in District Administration.

Seattle School Board Approves Controversial Science Curriculum

After intense public scrutiny, the Seattle School Board approved the district’s recommended science curricula for the city’s elementary- and middle-school students. The vendor, Amplify Science, came under suspicion over the past month because of the way it was introduced to the district: through a waiver process that included donated or discounted materials from the company, and not a formal districtwide vetting process. Read the article featured in the Seattle Times.

Bus Stops May Be as Good a Place as Any for a STEM Lesson

Be it for school or just running errands, thousands of children and their parents wait for the bus every day. A pilot program in Pennsylvania is trying to squeeze a little more science, technology, engineering, and math learning into those waits. Read the article featured in Education Week.

How Can We Get More Highly Effective Teachers to Serve as Mentors?

Relatively few highly effective teachers take on roles as mentors to student-teachers, researchers say. One solution? Pay them more—a lot more. Read the article featured in Education Week.

There’s A Nationwide STEM Teacher Shortage. Will It Cost Us The Next Einstein?

It’s striking to think about what our world would be missing if it weren’t for Albert Einstein: lasers, GPS, barcodes, to say nothing of our understanding of black holes, time/space, and the relationship between energy and matter. But what if a little boy named Albie E. never became the man known to history as Professor Albert Einstein? Read the article featured in Forbes.

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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