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STEM Education

FYI covers federal policies and programs focused on K-12, undergraduate, graduate, and informal education in the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics fields, including those supported by the Department of Education, National Science Foundation, and NASA.

3 Nov 2005

On October 26, the National Academy of Sciences and the National Science Teachers Association, in separate letters, informed the Kansas State Department of Education that it could not use their organization's copyrighted materials in the revision of the Kansas science standards. Both organizations disagreed with the draft standards as they relate to the theory of evolution. The Academy also disagreed with the redefinition of science in the Kansas draft. The American Association for the Advancement of Science issued a statement strongly supporting the action taken by both organizations.

8 Sep 2005

At a meeting last week of the DOE/NSF Nuclear Science Advisory Committee there was considerable optimism about the budgetary outlook for the Department of Energy's science programs, and a less promising prediction about FY 2006 funding for the National Science Foundation.

Most of the meeting was devoted to a discussion of a report by the Neutrino Scientific Assessment Group Subcommittee. The Advisory Committee, chaired by Richard F. Casten of Yale University, first heard from representatives of the Department of Energy and the National Science Foundation.

7 Apr 2005

The Administration's FY 2006 budget request would slash funding for science education programs at NSF and restrict the availability of funds for the Math and Science Partnership (MSP) program at the Department of Education, as reported in FYI #22. The American Institute of Physics has joined with several of its Member Societies and other scientific and educational organizations in the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Education to send letters to congressional appropriators in support of these programs.

16 Feb 2006

The themes of competitiveness, innovation and the need for strong education in science and mathematics run through the Administration's FY 2007 budget request to Congress. Within the Department of Education budget request, some new and some existing programs have been pulled together into a $380 million "Preparing America's Students for Global Competition" program, with a major focus on mathematics, as part of the President's American Competitiveness Initiative.

20 Jul 2007

The House has now passed its version of the FY 2008 Labor-HHS-Education Appropriations bill. During floor debate on the bill, an amendment was adopted to increase funding for the Department of Education's Mathematics and Science Partnership (MSP) program, from the FY 2007 funding level of $182.2 million to $197.9 million. This represents an increase of $15.7 million, or 8.6 percent. Both the President and the House Appropriations Committee recommended flat funding of $182 million for the MSP program; the Senate Appropriations Committee called for $184 million.

2 Jul 2007

FY 2008 appropriations legislation for the Department of Education has now passed the full Appropriations Committee in the Senate, and the Labor-HHS-Education Appropriations Subcommittee in the House. Both would provide virtually flat funding for the Education Department Math and Science Partnerships (MSP) program. Although it was originally authorized at $450 million, funding for this program has always fallen below $200 million.

14 Mar 2007

Representatives Vern Ehlers (R-MI) and Rush Holt (D-NJ) are seeking their colleagues' signatures on a letter requesting at least $450 million in funding for the Department of Education's Math and Science Partnership (MSP) program in the FY 2008 appropriations process. This is the originally-authorized funding level for the Education Department's MSP program, but the program has never received even half of that amount (the FY08 request is $182.1 million, equal to the FY07 request and the FY06 funding level).

12 Feb 2007

Federal efforts to improve science and math education would receive a boost under President Bush's FY 2008 budget request, as part of the American Competitiveness Initiative. All divisions within NSF's Education and Human Resources (EHR) Directorate would receive increases compared with the FY 2007 request. Funding for certain math and science education programs within the Department of Education (DoEd) would also be increased. However, the request for the Math and Science Partnership programs within both NSF and DoEd are equal to the FY 2007 requests.

14 Aug 2008

On July 31, Congress sent The Higher Education Opportunity Act (H.R. 4137) to the President’s desk.   Ten years after the last Higher Education Act (HEA) reauthorization, five years after legislators sat down to write another reauthorization, and after eight temporary extensions this year, the President has signed the overhaul into law.  Some highlights of the 400-plus page law include:


18 Jul 2008

There are several Department of Education programs in the Senate FY 2009 Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education, and Related Agencies Appropriations Bill that target science and math. Senate appropriators provided level funding for the Math and Science Partnerships, Minority Science and Engineering Improvement, and BA degrees in STEM and Critical Foreign Languages. S. 3230 included new money for Advanced Placement programs, but does not have funding for the proposed Math Now initiative.