STEM education

Education Forums, Sept. 2018

Aug 10, 2018

90.5 WESA hosted a series of forums on topics related to elementary and secondary education in Western Pennsylvania in September, 2018.

The four events were free and open to the public, and were generously supported by The Grable Foundation.

Sep. 4, 2018: Schools & Immigration
What are the needs of immigrant and refugee students in Western PA? What challenges do their families face? What is a school's responsibility in regard to educating immigrant students? How can schools better support immigrant students?

Courtesy of UPMC

Ann Kozak, 15, peered at a three-dimensional printed model of the female reproductive system. Learning about career options in women's health was a great experience, she said.

Sarah Boden/ 90.5 WESA

More than 600 educators from Pennsylvania, Ohio and New York gathered in McKees Rocks at Montour Elementary School on Tuesday for a conference on technology education.

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

More than a million classrooms in the United States do not have access to Wi-Fi. That statistic from the nonprofit Education Superhighway is quoted in a new documentary that details the digital divide in American classrooms.

Mark Goebel / Flickr

The Carnegie Science Center has received a $7.5 million gift from PPG and the PPG Foundation – the largest in the science center’s history. The donation will go towards the construction of the PPG Science Pavilion, which is scheduled for completion in June 2018.

Ryan Somma / Flickr

Local YMCAs have long-welcomed teenagers to play basketball and swim laps, but the Homewood-Brushton location will soon incorporate 3-D printers, recording studios and film production into a growing list of youth services.

saeru / flickr

The Carnegie Science Center has selected ten local school districts to become partners with its Carnegie STEM Excellence Pathway program.

The ten-member “cohort” consists of the Allegheny Valley, Avonworth, Baldwin-Whitehall, Bethel Park, Elizabeth Forward, Montour, Plum Borough, Shaler Area and West Allegheny school districts, as well as the A.W. Beattie Career Center.

More than 100 Pittsburgh students toured the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Energy Technology Laboratory in South Park on Friday to talk to experts about science, technology, engineering and math careers.

The lab was one of four in the country selected to host the event as part of President Barack Obama’s My Brother’s Keeper initiative, which challenges cities to focus on programming for at-risk youth.

There are 2.4 science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) jobs available for every unemployed person in Pennsylvania with STEM skills, according to the national science education advocacy group Change the Equation.

Meanwhile, the U.S. Department of Education reported that in 2013, low-income students in Pennsylvania scored about 9 percent lower on standardized math tests, and 20 percent lower on standardized science tests.

Westminster College in Lawrence County, about 60 miles north of Pittsburgh, has just announced a new program that aims to address both of these issues.

IQ STEM includes an undergraduate scholarship component and a professional development component, both of which focus on four high needs school districts in the region surrounding Westminster: Sharon City School District and Farrell Area School District in Mercer County, and Union Area School District and New Castle Area School District in Lawrence County.

High needs schools are defined by the Higher Education Act of 1965 and by the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 as schools with high teacher turnover rates, a high percentage of out-of-field or uncertified teachers, a high number of unfilled teaching positions and/or a large percentage of students whose families fall below the poverty line.