STEM is not widely embraced by the public education system in the U.S. currently. According to a report at U.S. News and World Report, only 2,100 high schools out of 42,000 currently offer the Advanced Placement test in computer science. This number is actually down 25 percent over the past five years. In addition, few states allow computer science to be taken to meet a math or science requirement. Only nine states allow computer science to be used as a core class that goes toward meeting graduation requirements.
“It will get you just as close to graduation as it will if you take woodworking,” Brad Smith, executive vice president of legal and corporate affairs at Microsoft, told U.S. News and World Report. “I love wood, but it’s not the future of our economy,” Smith added.
- STEM education isn’t improving; in fact, it may be getting worse.
- Math is the single-most important subject for students today, yet there is a shortage of qualified math teachers.
- Hands-on learning linking math and science to the real world is necessary for STEM to thrive.
- Women and minorities are less likely to pursue a STEM education.
- Parents need to get behind the STEM movement and encourage their children to pursue studies in these areas.
- STEM is as much an employment issue as an education issue – some even consider it a national security issue.