By providing grants to school districts and high schools, congress hopes to increase student interest in STEM fields and ultimately, create a globally competitive workforce. In a letter written by two congressmen, they state that math and computer related jobs are expected to grow more than twice as fast as jobs in any other field. What the congressmen pushing for this bill want to do is change the fact that such a small percentage of students are pursuing these fields. These fields are becoming extremely important to the American economy, and congress wants to make sure they don’t fail future generations, so they hope to give young students more opportunities.
The congressmen call the legislation the Innovation Inspiration School Grant Program. The grant program is aimed at increasing student access to STEM resources to partner with business, industry, nonprofit STEM competitions, and non-traditional academic courses like robotics. For teachers, the grant program will provide the proper training to foster innovation and help students graduate from high school and go on to STEM related university fields and eventually, careers.
The grant program will primarily target low-income districts and students that are traditionally a minority in the STEM fields. To compete for the grant, school districts will need to specify how they plan to implement their program, including how and where they will recruit mentors from and how they will support the teachers.
I personally think this is an excellent idea that these congressmen and congresswomen have come up with. It is exactly what many public schools in Massachusetts an all over the country need. If the bill passes and the grants are utilized properly I believe there will be a tremendous amount of students going into and graduating college with degrees in STEM fields. The way science is taught now is obviously not working, so a new, non-traditional, manner of teaching STEM subjects will surely make a difference. A strong background in the sciences will help students feel confident as they enter college and take courses in the STEM fields rather than being intimidated, like many are. I’m looking forward to seeing how this plays out. I will keep you posted followers!
Written by: Eden Ketema