Committee Democrats Add Key Provisions to the NSF Science Education Bill
Today, the Science Committee adopted H.R. 1858, the National Mathematics and Science Partnerships Act of 2001. Rep. Ralph Hall, ranking Democratic Member, commented, "The Committee has passed a very strong bill that includes many provisions designed to bring more support to our K-12 science and math teachers, their students, and their schools. Our aim is to help our children become much more proficient in science and math, and there are many programs authorized by this bill that will do just that."
Hall continued, "This bill includes many provisions authored by Democratic Members of the Committee. Chairman Boehlert is to be congratulated for accepting these proposals and working in a bipartisan fashion. I hope that we will continue to work in this manner later this month as we move into the more contentious areas of energy policy and electoral reform."
Democratic provisions in the bill would establish the following:
- Mr. Etheridge (NC) included a measure for the National Science Foundation (NSF) to establish partnerships between institutions of higher learning and local or state school systems to improve the instruction of elementary and secondary science education;
- Mr. Baca (CA) added a provision for support of internet-based teacher professional development activities;
- Ms. Woolsey (CA) added language to create math and science enrichment grants to develop courses targeting young women (Go Girl Grants);
- Mr. Hall (TX) inserted directions for creating and funding the National Science, Mathematics, Engineering and Technology Education Digital Library;
Mr. Hall also added language to
- fund partnerships between two-year colleges and secondary schools to attract students to science and engineering,
- require assessments of NSF in-service teacher development programs, and
- establish a research program to quantify the effectiveness of educational technologies in school programs.
- Ms. Johnson (TX) established a demonstration program for math and science proficiency partnerships between K-12 educational entities and private sector partners.
- Mr. Udall (CO) sponsored a program for one-year stipends to holders of math, science and engineering degrees who wish to become certified as K-12 science teachers and are willing to serve as teachers in Title I schools for two years;
- Mr. Honda's (CA) initiatives establish a program to partner college students with K-12 schools in using information technology (including providing training for teachers), and authorize NSF to craft K-12 materials related to energy production and use, energy conservation and renewable energy;
- Mr. Matheson (UT) provided authorization for research projects grants for students at secondary schools, including training for teachers in research design, information exchange among students, assessments of effectiveness and stipends for graduate students to act as advisors;
- Ms. Jackson Lee (TX) added language that
- directs the National Digital Library to include on-line links to materials from K-12 education improvement conferences,
- requires strategic education research centers to provide awards focused on research and development of educational practices designed to improve the academic performance of a broad range of students, including those from underrepresented groups, and
- directs NSF to collect data on Noyce teaching scholarship recipients to include information on what institutions the recipients teach in;