The article explores how states and districts can use the additional flexibility in the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) to address the well-documented underrepresentation of women and people of color in STEM fields. These suggestions include directing more resources towards at-risk students, building STEM career pathways in career-and technical-education programming, and utilizing high-quality informal learning providers to their fullest potential. Equitable access to high-quality STEM education opportunities is critical to filling gaps in the STEM pipeline.
The article follows Education First’s report on Making the Most of ESSA: Opportunities to Advance STEM Education. The STEM Education contributed to this report.