Washington, DC— The Coalition urged U.S. Senators this week to sign a letter supporting funding for the Math and Science Partnership program at the Department of Education.
The Coalition’s message to all Senate offices:
To All Senate Offices:
On behalf of the STEM Education Coalition, I urge you to sign the Merkley-Franken Dear Colleague letter in support of FY2015 Appropriations for the Math and Science Partnership program at the Department of Education and a pilot initiative to establish a STEM Master Teacher Corps. The text of the letter is attached. To sign on, contact Susan Lexer in Sen. Merkley’s office or Gohar Sedighi in Sen. Franken’s office. Deadline for signers is COB on Wednesday, April 2nd.
The Math and Science Partnership program provides funding to each state to support STEM education efforts at the K-12 level. The Dep. of Educations own most recent evaluation of this program has shown that it is effective at improving student success and teacher content knowledge in STEM subjects and we strongly support continued funding of the MSP program at least the current level of $150 million. Also attached is a chart showing funding for each state over the past 10 years.
We also support the Administration’s proposal for a pilot-scale STEM Master Teacher Corps program. This appropriately-sized effort would allow the Department to develop a better understanding of how to identify, recognize, and reward the most accomplished STEM educators by increasing their compensation, providing them with leadership opportunities, and helping to create a national community of outstanding STEM educators.
The central mission our Coalition is to inform federal and state policymakers on the critical role that STEM education plays in U.S. competitiveness and future economic prosperity and to advocate for policies that will improve STEM education at every level.
Why is STEM Education a National Priority?
STEM education must be elevated as a national priority as reflected through education reforms, policies to drive innovation, and federal and state spending priorities. STEM education is also closely linked with our nation’s economic prosperity in the modern global economy; strong STEM skills are a central element of a well-rounded education and essential to effective citizenship. Our nation must expand the capacity and diversity of the STEM workforce pipeline to prepare more students for the best jobs of the future that will keep the U.S. innovative, secure and competitive.
- Council on Foreign Relations: “60 percent of U.S. employers are having difficulties finding qualified workers to fill vacancies at their companies.”
- Change the Equation: “In the current overall employment market, unemployed people outnumber job postings 3.6 to one. In the STEM occupations, job postings outnumbered unemployed people by 1.9 to one.”
- National Governors Association Center for Best Practices: “At all levels of educational attainment, STEM job holders earn 11 percent higher wages compared with their same-degree counterparts in other jobs.”
- Georgetown Center for Education and the Workforce: “47 percent of Bachelor’s degrees in STEM occupations earn more than PhDs in non-STEM occupations.”
Thank you for your consideration.
STEM Education Coalition
2000 M Street St NW, Suite 520
Washington, DC 20036