Opinion
Science Letter to the Editor

Access to STEM Instruction Is Uneven

January 22, 2019 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

To the Editor:

The blog post “STEM Instruction: How Much There Is and Who Gets It” demonstrates the broad inequality of access to STEM education among our nation’s students (Curriculum Matters, January 8, 2019). Such inequities should serve as a wake-up call to educators, parents, and the business community alike.

For more than 20 years, employers have lamented the skills gap in America’s workforce and how this impacts the country’s long-term global competitiveness. The New York Academy of Sciences believes there is a crucial disparity between the STEM skills taught in K-12 schools today and those required by employers—a disparity that could be addressed if all students were provided a minimum standard of STEM instruction.

Affluent school districts with access to generous funding sources attract top teachers and equip their classrooms with the resources needed to properly engage and instruct students in STEM. But we need to ensure that all students have this advantage if we hope to maintain the educated citizenry that will fuel the talent pipeline of the future.

Investing in teacher professional development and ensuring that schools in underserved communities have highly qualified instructors would be a good start to address the deficiencies in our STEM education system. The long-term economic and social vibrancy of the country depends upon it.

Hank Nourse

Senior Vice President, Chief Learning Officer

The New York Academy of Sciences

New York, N.Y.

Related Tags:

A version of this article appeared in the January 23, 2019 edition of Education Week as Access to STEM Instruction Is Uneven

Events

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Budget & Finance Webinar
The ABCs of ESSER: How to Make the Most of Relief Funds Before They Expire
Join a diverse group of K-12 experts to learn how to leverage federal funds before they expire and improve student learning environments.
Content provided by Johnson Controls
Science K-12 Essentials Forum How To Teach STEM Problem Solving Skills to All K-12 Students
Join experts for a look at how experts are integrating the teaching of problem solving and entrepreneurial thinking into STEM instruction.
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
School & District Management Webinar
Modernizing Principal Support: The Road to More Connected and Effective Leaders
When principals are better equipped to lead, support, and maintain high levels of teaching and learning, outcomes for students are improved.
Content provided by BetterLesson

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Science These 3 Latina Teachers Are Pushing the Boundaries of Computer Science Class
From California to Massachusetts to Puerto Rico, Latina educators are helping expand notions of what counts as "real" computer science.
9 min read
Megan Bowen walks through the lesson plan for the day during class at Salem Academy Charter School in Salem, Mass., on April 25, 2022.
Megan Bowen walks through the lesson plan for the day during class at Salem Academy Charter School in Salem, Mass., on April 25, 2022.
Nathan Klima for Education Week
Science How to Make AP STEM Classes More Diverse and Inclusive
A new report found that cultivating students' sense of belonging helps encourage underrepresented students to enroll in AP STEM courses.
5 min read
Black girl wearing face mask and protective glasses using microscope in laboratory
iStock/Getty Images Plus
Science Quiz Quiz Yourself: How Much Do You Know About Laying the Foundation for STEM Education?
Answer 7 questions to discover how to lay the foundation for STEM education.
Science Catching Up Native American Students in Science
The pandemic dealt a setback to science education for Native American students, but culturally relevant lessons could offer a path forward.
7 min read
Conceptual illustration of a lone figure not fitting into the digital environment
Vanessa Solis/Education Week and Victor Grow/iStock