video overview

IIr Associates, Inc.
Publisher of The Virginia Engineer

Print-Publishing Services
Web Site Design-Coding-Hosting
Business Consulting

Phone: (804) 779-3527

SPIE Sponsors National Education Meeting
May 5, 2008

Of the 30 top world economies, 29 have common high-quality standards and common science and math curricula, and one – the United States – does not, Robert Corcoran of the GE Foundation noted in Washington, D.C. That lack of emphasis “is not a way to stay competitive,” he added.

Mr. Corcoran was among 95 lawmakers, program directors, agency representatives, and others at a science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education event held in conjunction with the STEM Education Caucus on Capitol Hill. He spoke at a luncheon briefing sponsored by the International Society for Optics and Photonics (SPIE), the National Science Teachers Association, and the American Chemical Society. Other speakers included Diane Spresser of the National Science Foundation (NSF), Bill Valdez of the Department of Energy (DoE) Office of Science, and Barbara Koscak of the Department of Defense (DoD) Starbase program.

U.S. 15-year-olds performed below the average for 30 industrialized countries in both mathematics and science according to the recently released Programme for International Student Assessment, Ms. Spresser said. In addition, she said, only 70 percent of U.S. students graduate on time from high school with a regular diploma.

Mr. Corcoran promoted strategies such as doubling the required number of credit hours in math and science for teachers, requiring four years of high school math and science, and adopting national standards for a high-quality common curriculum.

Ms. Koscak and Mr. Valdez described K-12 science education programs administered by their organizations. Mr. Valdez said that more than 35 governmental agencies are involved in STEM R&D and have programs in STEM education or workforce development.

SPIE’s sponsorship of the event reflects its members’ support of STEM education and R&D. “The more we can expose K-12 students to exciting hands-on science and technology, the greater the likelihood that these students will take a long-term interest in becoming a scientist, engineer or mathematician,” said SPIE Vice President Ralph James of Brookhaven National Lab. “We need STEM education programs that show students that science can be fun and rewarding.”

For more information about public policy issues, visit the Public Policy News pages on SPIE’s website.

  ------   News Item Archive  -----  
The Virginia Engineer on facebook
The Virginia Engineer RSS Feed