A regional STEM Network, whose goal is a “world class” STEM education for all students in the Road Map Districts, has developed a five-year businessplan to bring this goal to fruition. Leading the effort is Puget Sound Educational Service District (PSESD), Community Center for Education Results (CCER), Washington STEM and a Leadership and Advisory Team of STEM businesses, community organizations, higher education, youth, and K-12 educators. The “Road Map” districts are Renton, Tukwila, Highline, Kent, Federal Way, Auburn and South Seattle. These districts and their community partners are working to double the number of students who are on track to graduate from college or earn a career credential by 2020 and to closing the achievement gap. Their work is referred to as the Road Map Project, a collective impact initiative being led by CCER.
The STEM Network is working collaboratively with the Road Map Project. The goal is to achieve educational and workforce needs. That means preparing all students to be STEM literate and creating clear pathways to STEM fields in post-secondary education and careers. We want all students in the Road Map districts prepared for STEM jobs so they can participate in and propel our innovation-oriented, knowledge-based local economy.
The STEM Network is an action-oriented partnership of multiple organizations within a defined geographic area, working in concert toward the common goal of student success in STEM. This community-based strategy engages schools, nonprofits, businesses, and others to drive innovation and improvements in STEM teaching and learning at a systems level.
Why a STEM Network?
While teachers are the number one driver of student academic performance, teachers cannot do it alone. We must leverage all the assets of a community to support the effectiveness of teachers and the success of students. The STEM business community is a key partner is improving STEM education for our students.
Tipping Point – We can dramatically increase student impact, and ultimately scale more quickly, by implementing a community-based strategy to STEM education. Previous efforts to improve student learning outcomes in STEM have fallen short for many reasons, including a lack of agreed upon goals, the inability to overcome barriers, or because certain groups were not at the table. Bringing key stakeholders together into a STEM Network represents an opportunity to mitigate such risks and reach a tipping point for system change.