Education Department Highlights Advances in STEM Learning

Teachers have made the commonwealth a national leader in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education because of their commitment and the Wolf Administration’s comprehensive plan to prepare students for in-demand jobs, a top Department of Education (PDE) official told participants at the annual Keystone Technology Innovators Summit at Shippensburg University.

“Governor Wolf is committed to strengthening Pennsylvania’s workforce and you, as educators, play a vital role in that transformation,” said PDE Deputy Secretary for Elementary and Secondary Education Matthew Stem. “To grow the strongest workforce in the country, the administration has advanced education policies and programs to increase high-quality STEM and computer science experiences. Coming here for an intense week of activities during the summer demonstrates your commitment to collaborate and develop best practices to take back to your schools and classrooms.”

The annual conference draws classroom teachers, educational technologists, librarians, school administrators and technology directors who discuss and share how technology is improving education at their schools.

“Job growth in the STEM and computer science fields is driving the economy,” added Stem. “Research suggests that over the next 10 years, 71 percent of new jobs will require computer science skills. And this year alone, Pennsylvania will need to fill more than 300,000 STEM-related jobs.”

Pennsylvania has been a leader in STEM education, including Governor Wolf’s PAsmart initiative, a groundbreaking approach to provide skills training for jobs in high demand. Through PAsmart grants, the administration will award nearly $20 million to bolster STEM, computer science and career-readiness efforts and $10 million for hands-on skills training and apprenticeships. The 2019-20 state budget also includes an increase of $10 million for career and technical programs and grants.