City Council learns more about STEM education efforts


Philadelphia City Council is looking into introducing science and math to the school district’s youngest students.



The council’s education committee held a hearing Tuesday to hear more about STEM education — science, technology, engineering and math — and how to make sure those subjects are represented on the pre-kindergarten and kindergarten levels.

The school district is trying to raise money through grants and working with the private sector to expand the education to younger students, said Lori Shorr, the city’s chief education officer.

“As part of our U.S. 2020 application, we’re bringing together a coalition of STEM partners from colleges and universities, corporations and businesses, research institutions and the nonprofit community, to impact their collective knowledge and mentor Philadelphia students underrepresented in STEM careers,” she said.

Improving STEM education is critical, said David Hardy, the district’s chief academic support officer.

“The jobs of the future are STEM jobs and having some degree of STEM proficiency is associated with higher earnings,” he said.

The district is working with Drexel University and other educators on determining goals for a STEM initiative in the district.

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