Get $21 million for Science/Math Education
higher education institutions unite in effort to boost learning
A $21.3 million federal grant to address critical needs in science and
math education in 17 county school districts has been awarded to The
University of North Carolina at Pembroke in partnership with three universities
and the public schools.
The program, funded
by the National Science Foundation
(NSF) and the U.S. Department of Education, targets 200,000 students,
kindergarten through 12th grade in eastern North Carolina.
"This is a
significant grant for this region," said UNCP Chancellor Allen
C. Meadors. "It is a model of how higher education should work
together to help the public schools and their students."
"I am proud
of our mathematics and science departments, our grants office and everyone
who worked so hard to make this program possible," Chancellor Meadors
said. "This grant has the opportunity to make a very positive difference
for education in eastern North Carolina."
five-year award reaffirms our ironclad determination to be a committed
partner in efforts to strengthen the public schools and improve the
academic performance of all students," said UNC President Molly
Corbett Broad. "It also reflects the University's growing success
at attracting federal grants and contracts to leverage scarce state
The grant was applied
for by the North Carolina Partnership for Improving Mathematics and
Science (NC-PIMS), a collaboration between the 16-campus University
of North Carolina and the NC Mathematics and Science Education Network
(NC-MSEN), has received a $13-million grant from the National Science
Foundation to help raise academic achievement in rural school districts
in eastern North Carolina. Partnering with NSF, the Department of Education
has committed $8.3 million to this effort, bringing the total award
to $21.3 million to be distributed over five years.
NSF's new Math and Science Partnership program, the grant will promote
collaboration among teachers, guidance counselors, administrators, and
parents in 17 county school districts, the Department of Public Instruction
and faculty from the four universities.
UNC Pembroke's university
partners are East Carolina University, Fayetteville State University
and UNC Wilmington, said Dr. Jose D'Arruda, chair of UNCP's Department
of Chemistry and Physics and group leader for
science instruction are changing very rapidly, and this program will
allow our public school teachers to provide the latest instructional
innovations to their students," Dr. D'Arruda said. "At UNCP,
we have been doing advanced training for public school teachers in science
for many years, but this grant will allow us to reach out to many, many
more teachers and students. I am so excited about this."
UNCP will use the
grant to hire facilitators to coordinate training programs in the summer
to present workshops for teachers, and during the school year they will
work with these teachers in their schools. Science and math professors
from all four universities will also be hired to teach and consult with
the program, Dr. D'Arruda said.
The Math and Science
Partnership (MSP) program is a five-year national effort to unite the
activities of higher education institutions, K-12 school systems and
other partners in support of K-12 students and teachers. The program
is part of President Bush's "No Child Left Behind" initiative
to strengthen and reform K-12 education.
The NSF announced
24 awards under the new Math and Science Partnership (MSP) program -
an anticipated investment of $240 million over five years in projects
to improve the achievement of K-12 students in science and mathematics.
The Department of Education (ED) is an NSF partner in this effort, co-funding
two projects involving state education agencies.
A key facet of President
Bush's "No Child Left Behind" education plan and the first
investment in his five-year, $1 billion math and science partnership
initiative, these new partnership activities are designed to enhance
the performance of U.S. students in mathematics and science. Partnership
projects address key contributing factors such as: too many teachers
who are not fully trained to teach math and science subjects; too few
students who take advanced coursework; and too few schools that offer
challenging curricula and textbooks.
The new partnership
program will unite teachers and administrators in K-12 schools, mathematics,
science and engineering faculty in colleges and universities, and other
stakeholders in K-12 education to improve student outcomes. The new
projects will seek to enhance the quantity, quality and diversity of
the math and science teacher workforce at a time when many teachers
are retiring or otherwise leaving the profession. Designed to raise
mathematics and science achievement of all students, MSP projects are
also expected to reduce the well-documented achievement gaps among segments
of student populations.
will become part of a broad national network of interconnected sites
that will share successful instructional strategies, entice and train
competent science and math teachers and improve learning for millions
of students," said NSF Director Rita Colwell.
"One of the
key outcomes of these grants will be the improved content knowledge
of teachers of mathematics and science in districts across America,"
said U.S. Secretary of Education Rod Paige. "This will undoubtedly
lead to improved student achievement."
The seven comprehensive
awards announced today total about $147 million over five years and
will affect about 1.8 million students in 11 states. Comprehensive MSP
projects are designed to continuously improve student achievement in
math and science from the earliest grades through grade 12.
partnership grants are designed to improve achievement in specific disciplines
or grade ranges. They total about $90 million over five years and will
affect about 200 school districts and some 600,000 pre-K through grade
12 students in 11 states.
will increase our nation's ability to serve all of our students well
and will support the quality of our science and engineering enterprise,"
said Judith Ramaley, NSF's assistant director for Education and Human
to University Newswire