National Science Board Report Releases STEM Innovators Report
Nurturing the talents and abilities of America’s most gifted students from all demographic areas is critical in ensuring the nation’s future prosperity, a new report concludes.
The National Science Board’s report, Preparing the Next Generation of Stem Innovators: Identifying and Developing Our Nation’s Human Capital, completes a two-year study motivated by data demonstrating America has lost its world pre-eminence in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).
“A coherent, proactive, sustained effort to identify and develop our nation’s future STEM innovators will help drive future economic prosperity, improve the quality of life for all, and ensure both equity and excellence in education,” the report states.
Several policy recommendations set forth include:
- Increasing K-12 access to accelerated coursework and enrichment programs
- Offering more “above-level tests,” especially in economically disadvantaged urban and rural areas
- Holding schools, and perhaps districts and states, accountable for the performance of the top students at each grade level
- Supporting rigorous, research-based STEM preparation for teachers, particularly those most likely to have contact with potential STEM innovators
While the board acknowledges the “many past and current educational reforms” put forth to raise the general performance of all students, the needs of the nation’s most talented students must be addressed as well.
“The possibility of reaching one’s full potential should not be met with ambivalence, left to chance, or limited to those with financial means,” the report states. “Rather, the opportunity for excellence is a fundamental American value and should be afforded to all.”
The National Science Board sets policy for the National Science Foundation and serves as an advisory body to the White House and Congress.