The White House released a statement yesterday from President Donald Trump about how he is working to ensure all Americans have access to STEM education.
“My Administration will do everything possible to provide our children, especially kids in underserved areas, with access to high-quality education in science, technology, engineering, and math,” Trump said.
The Trump administration has swallowed the workforce development model of education hook, line, and sinker. Because of this, I don’t think we can reasonably expect any significant positive changes in education policy.
The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy released a report by the Committee on STEM Education of the National Science and Technology Council that outlined the Administration’s plan for STEM Education.
They stated three goals:
- Build Strong Foundations for STEM Literacy by ensuring that every American has the opportunity to master basic STEM concepts, including computational thinking, and to become digitally literate. A STEM-literate public will be better equipped to handle rapid technological change and will be better prepared to participate in civil society.
- Increase Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in STEM and provide all Americans with lifelong access to high-quality STEM education, especially those historically underserved and underrepresented in STEM fields and employment. The full benefits of the Nation’s STEM enterprise will not be realized until this goal is achieved.
- Prepare the STEM Workforce for the Future—both college-educated STEM practitioners and those working in skilled trades that do not require a four-year degree—by creating authentic learning experiences that encourage and prepare learners to pursue STEM careers. A diverse talent pool of STEM-literate Americans prepared for the jobs of the future will be essential for maintaining the national innovation base that supports key sectors of the economy and for making the scientific discoveries and creating the technologies of the future.
One of the ways the Trump administration would like to accomplish these goals is through increasing work-based learning:
Strategic partnerships that promote work-based learning (WBL) experiences offer powerful, relevant ways to ensure that STEM learning is authentic and engaging, and that learners are prepared to succeed in the modern workforce. Learners who have access to WBL opportunities—ranging from elementary school workplace visits, to secondary pre-apprenticeships, to skilled trade apprenticeships, to research experiences and internships for undergraduates and graduate students—are better prepared to transition into the skilled workforce. Although WBL policies and practices vary widely across the country, communities can consider adopting components and promising practices that include a consensus definition of WBL, a strategic plan, a coordination entity, outreach strategies, and clear communication.
Read the Trump Administration plan below: