Educators, industry leaders address ‘root causes’ of STEM teacher shortage

March 27, 2019

SAN DIEGO — School district administrators, teacher educators, foundation officials, and nonprofit and corporate leaders gathered at the San Diego Zoo Tuesday to further their collaborative efforts to prepare more STEM teachers for the nation’s classrooms.

Participating in the 100Kin10 initiative’s annual summit, attendees shared their expertise and held discussions around “grand challenges,” such as teacher preparation and supporting teachers at the elementary level in teaching STEM content.

“The importance here is solving the crisis around our STEM teacher shortage,” said Larry Plank, director of K-12 STEM Education for the Hillsborough County Public Schools (HCPS) in Florida, which brought a seven-member team, including a school board member, a parent advocate and a principal, to this year’s event. For years, he said, he would bring back what he had learned from the gathering, “but it’s hard to be a prophet in your own town.”

The event also comes as 100Kin10 announced that its partner organizations have trained or certified more than 68,000 STEM teachers toward the goal of preparing 100,000 by 2021.

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