Program To Help Train 100,000 STEM TeachersPublished: March 3, 2014
The Long Beach College Promise partnership—which includes CSULB, Long Beach City College (LBCC) and the Long Beach Unified School District (LBUSD)—is among the list of 31 new partner organizations aligned with 100Kin10.
Established in 2011, 100Kin10 is a networked approach to providing America’s classrooms with 100,000 excellent STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) teachers by 2021 while supporting tens of thousands more. Through unique, ambitious commitments, more than 150 partners are together fueling the creation of the next generation of innovators and problem solvers.
Network organizers note that more and better-trained STEM teachers are essential to prepare America’s students to fully participate in our democracy and to understand and respond to complex national and global challenges. To compete in the global marketplace and provide opportunity to all young Americans, all students—not just those fortunate enough to attend certain schools— must have basic STEM skills and knowledge.
“Many children grow up imagining themselves as solving one or more of our nation’s most pressing problems. While they don’t conceptualize things as adults do, they do encounter problems they want to fix,” said CSULB Interim President Donald J. Para. “A fifth-grader who loses her mother to cancer may dream of someday curing this widespread disease. Yet, the challenge we face today is that too many students are not persisting in science either because they view the content as uninspiring or the math too difficult.
“I’m pleased the Long Beach College Promise partnership has joined the 100Kin10 network and will help produce more science educators and equip teachers with strategies to retain students so they may persist to achieve a STEM related college credential.”
CSULB has committed to preparing an additional 970 K-12 teachers by 2018. This includes working with LBCC and making sure that some 250 community college transfers are ready to enter the university’s elementary credential program with a STEM specialization with its rigorous math and science coursework.
“Investment in the STEM fields is critical to our nation’s ability to remain competitive in a global economy, replicate innovate teaching practices at the local level and motivate our students to view research and development as a career pathway,” said LBCC President Eloy Ortiz Oakley. “We are proud to participate in the 100Kin10 initiative. We know that producing qualified STEM teachers through advanced training programs will result in students and graduates with the capacity to build a new economy for our nation in growth industries.”
Organizations are accepted as 100Kin10 partners following a vetting process conducted by a team of partner reviewers and the University of Chicago. Reviewers are looking for organizations that bring innovation, boldness, and a proven track-record to their commitment(s) toward expanding, improving and retaining the best of the nation’s STEM teaching force or building the 100Kin10 movement.
“The Long Beach Unified School District sees the 100Kin10 network as a practical way to address a national issue, and we’re pleased to be part of this important effort,” said LBUSD Superintendent Christopher J. Steinhauser. “Our participation in the network is a logical extension of the work we have done for years with LBCC and CSULB to support teachers and prepare new ones for successful careers in science, technology, math and engineering education.”
As partners fulfill their commitments and work together to spark innovation, they have access to exclusive opportunities—including competitive research opportunities, solution labs, collaboration grants, a growing research and learning platform and a funding marketplace. Each of these is designed to foster collaborative problem-solving and support partners in fulfilling their ambitious commitments.
In the first two years of the effort, 100Kin10 partners who have committed to increase the supply of great STEM teachers have recruited and prepared 12,412 teachers. They are projected to prepare just shy of 37,000 teachers by 2016, five years into the project’s 10-year timeline. The network’s continued growth will add to this total number. In addition, nearly 75 partners are working to support and improve existing teachers so that more of them stay in the profession with the goal of reducing the need for so many new teachers entering the workforce.
The Long Beach College Promise was established in 2008 with a focus on providing a number of guarantees to help all local students prepare for, enter and succeed in college. It is an extension of the Long Beach Education Partnership that was launched in 1994 by local civic leaders to ensure that all students would progress smoothly through the education systems and into the workforce.