New Coalition Aims To Bolster Elementary Science

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A group of educators, education publishers, and businesses from Arc Capital Development has formed formed a new coalition aiming to advance science in elementary education by tackling perceived problems at the federal level. The group, the Elementary Science Coalition, said it's looking to bring a national focus to the issue of improving science education for young learners and to achieve increased funding for elementary science education in the United States.

In a statement released yesterday, Rita Ferrandino, one of the founders of the coalition and founding principal of Arc, said, "Science education is quietly in crisis in this country. The average elementary school student spends only one hour a week on science, taught by teachers who are undereducated in science. Elementary-aged children have few opportunities to engage in the discovery of science, depriving them of the chance to build the cumulative understanding necessary to ensure their interest and success in science." Ferrandino is also the CEO of Teacher2Teacher, a company that provides technology-oriented professional development services for teachers.

One of the specific goals of the coalition, according to information released this week, is to triple the amount of science periods in elementary education to help capture interest in younger students and provide them with foundational knowledge they'll need for more advanced study at the secondary and post-secondary levels.

To this end, the coalition will launch an awareness campaign targeted at teachers, administrators, and parents; will provide professional development for elementary teachers; will advocate for changes in assessments; and will "campaign for coherent standards alignment for students in grades PK-16," according to the Elementary Science Coalition.

The Carmen Group, an education lobbying and advocacy firm, will be providing the coalition with support for its legislative efforts. Further information can be found at the links below.

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About the author: David Nagel is the executive editor for 1105 Media's online education technology publications, including THE Journal and Campus Technology. He can be reached at dnagel@1105media.com.

Proposals for articles and tips for news stories, as well as questions and comments about this publication, should be submitted to David Nagel, executive editor, at dnagel@1105media.com.

About the Author

David Nagel is the executive producer for 1105 Media's online K-12 and higher education publications and electronic newsletters. He can be reached at dnagel@1105media.com. He can now be followed on Twitter at http://twitter.com/THEJournalDave (K-12) or http://twitter.com/CampusTechDave (higher education). You can also connect with him on LinkedIn at http://www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=10390192.

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