On Wednesday, May 24, the STEM Education Coalition hosted a Congressional briefing titled “Challenges in STEM Teaching: Sustaining the Teacher Workforce. Moderated by James Brown, Executive Director of the STEM Education Coalition, the panel discussion featured presentations from:
- Dr. Sean McCarty, Assistant Superintendent, Grades K-6, Seneca Valley School District, Pennsylvania;
- Dr. Ann Bonitatibus, Principal, Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology;
- Dr. Erika Shugart, Executive Director, National Science Teaching Association; and
- Dr. Denise Spangler, Dean, College of Education, University of Georgia.
Panelists presented on the challenges like an overall general decline in the STEM teacher workforce, opportunity gaps for underserved populations because of teacher shortages, and burnout because of factors like assessments, lack of voice, and societal pressures. The panelists also outlined potential solutions, including innovating classroom spaces and learning environments, reforming accountability systems, and more resources and time for high quality professional development and paid residencies.