Connected STEM Learning Roundtable with Senator Patty Murray
by School's Out Washington | | Posted under
School’s Out Washington was thrilled to be included at U.S. Senator Patty Murray’s Connected STEM Roundtable on May 31st at the Pacific Science Center. The roundtable focused on the critical need to include quality, accessible STEM programming to children and youth across our state and nationally in the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) implementation process. ESSA is the re-authorization of No Child Left Behind and includes key provisions that allow for federal funding to be used for out-of-school time. For questions about ESSA, contact David Beard at dbeard [at] schoolsoutwashington.org.
While STEM is not mentioned in the new laws specifically, Senator Murray and the roundtable participants unanimously agreed that STEM is a critical way to engage students not only in science, technology, engineering, and math, but also gives them transferable skills such as the ability to perform analysis and ask questions that can be used for writing an English paper or working on a team.
We were thrilled to be part of the group, which included State Representative Noel Frame, high school students, business representatives, community organizations, educators, and our partners at the Pacific Northwest Girls Collaborative Project, Washington STEM, the Pacific Science Center, and more.
It was exciting to see that one of the best practices highlighted at the roundtable was our own Youth Program Quality Assessment work, and will continue to work collaboratively with this amazing group and Senator Murray’s office in the coming months and years.
The group will continue to meet to ensure that recommendations are made regarding STEM in ESSA, but also that we continue to have a united voice as a state and as communities to ensure STEM programming is accessible to all children of youth, particularly girls, low income youth, and youth of color. This also is reflected in SOWA’s ongoing STEM policy and advocacy work that is relaunching this summer. For more information on our STEM efforts, contact Stephanie Lennon at slennon [at] schoolsoutwashington.org
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