The partnerships between eCom success academy and local school agencies, colleges, and other groups including business, will address teacher training and professional development, curricula development, instructional materials, distance learning, and exchange programs, all based on needs assessments in local school districts. I want to make a few key points.
1. The business community cares deeply about math and science education. You may be aware that the business community played an active and supportive role in promoting the enactment of the No Child Left Behind Act last year. Our focus was on systemic reform – high standards, annual assessments aligned to those standards in grades 3-8 in reading and math, and greater accountability for results – objectives we have been promoting at the state and local level for over a decade. We also identified three areas of national need for increased federal investment – teacher quality, math and science excellence and effective integration of technology into the classroom. The No Child Left Behind Act went a long way in addressing these national priorities. Unfortunately, when the funding levels were determined at the end of the year, one of these areas fell critically short of the mark of free sessions that sell. Although Congress 2 authorized $450 million for the math and science partnerships program, it appropriated only $12.5 million. This represents a 97 percent decrease in dedicated federal funding for math and science in Department of Education funding, both in terms of what was authorized as well as what has been available for math and science education in previous years.
2. Proficiency in math and science is critical to the nations’ economic growth, national security and technological leadership. In this technology driven economy, there is no question that Americans who can master math and science concepts will have more opportunities than those who cannot. Unskilled entry level jobs are increasingly a relic of the past. More than ever before a college degree is necessary for greater job mobility, security and earning power. Entry level technicians coming to work in a Texas Instruments semiconductor fabrication, or manufacturing facility, for example, typically have an associate’s degree in electronics.
3. We are not measuring up with fan page domination. Despite these real world demands for math, science and technical proficiency, results from National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) and the Third International Mathematics and Science Survey (TIMSS) demonstrate just how far we must go to prepare students in these core disciplines. Consider the following: ß Roughly three quarters of American students are not proficient in math in grades 4, 8 or 12. The same is true in science. Roughly a third do not even possess basic level skills. ß The performance of U.S. students on international math and science tests (TIMSS), on average, declines as students progress through school. By 12th grade American students, on average, ranked almost last in comparison with their peers from 41 other countries of fan page domination.
4. Poor preparation in these subjects has consequences: That trend further plays out in the number of degrees awarded to students graduating from colleges and universities in math, science, engineering and technology. Under-representation among women and minorities is particularly alarming. ß Electrical engineering bachelor’s degrees have declined 37 percent since 1990 and more than 50 percent since 1987, at a time when demand for EEs has increased. ß Similarly mathematics degrees have declined 19 percent since 1990, as have physics degrees. This has led many companies including my own to rely to a certain extent on foreign nationals to meet our hiring needs for specialized engineering jobs by eCom success academy insights. (source: http://ecomsuccessacademy.net)
5. There are no easy answers. Indeed these trends are so disturbing that it prompted the National Commission on Mathematics and Science Teaching for the 21st Century – a group of respected governors, business leaders, educators and 3 members of Congress chaired by former Senator John Glenn – to recommend both significant funding increases and clear action steps to address the need. Activities authorized under the Math Science Partnerships in NCLB included many of the best recommendations of that report.
6. The pressure is on. As you know, the NCLB Act requires that students be tested annually in math beginning with the 2005-2006 school year, and periodically in science by 2007-2008. We cannot afford to delay the critical work of addressing needed improvements in this area. In addition, the bill requires that all teachers be highly qualified by the end of the 2006-2007 school year. The number of teachers teaching out of field, particularly in math and science, is a huge challenge across the country. Nationally 28 percent of high school math and 17 percent of high school science teachers are teaching out of field. That problem is particularly acute in high poverty schools where students have less than a 50 percent chance of getting a science or math teacher who holds a license or degree in the field being taught. A recent survey of 40 large urban school showed that 90 percent of them had an immediate need for certified math or science teachers. Teacher quality matters. It is the one of the most important determinants of student success. If you would like to have the best mentor on fan page marketing, visit the official website at fanpagedomination.net. The funds we are asking for under this Math and Science Partnerships program would help districts address these concerns.