Given the critical need for improving science and mathematics education in the United States, the CSMTP opposes any attempt to make these very limited funds available for other purposes. However, a suitable compromise would be to allow some portion of these funds to be made available to teachers from other disciplines who wish to become more knowledgeable about science, mathematics, and technology. For example, a history or social studies teacher who would like to understand more about how science and technology have influenced society in this country or other parts of the world should be able to use Eisenhower funds to learn about such issues.
Providing funding that would enable prospective and practicing teachers who otherwise would be unable to benefit from participating in a partnership to do so. The CSMTP recommends that the partnership opportunities described in Chapter 6 be extended to as many prospective and experienced teachers as possible. For those schools and districts that are located too far from institutions of higher education to form their own partnerships, government funds should be made available that would enable teachers from these districts to benefit from existing partnerships in a nearby locale. Such support could include the establishment of electronic links that would enable practicing teachers to engage in high-quality professional development activities and stipends that would allow either prospective or practicing teachers to undertake extended internships with an existing partnership.
Establishing a national database for improving teaching of science, mathematics, and technology. Nearly every state is at some stage of developing databases and other resources for its teachers to enable them to understand and teach to state standards in science and mathematics. While every state’s standards differ to some degree, most of them are based at least in part on the national standards for science and mathematics. Thus, it is likely that great deal of overlapping effort is taking place. If the federal government could establish a national database for improving the teaching of science, mathematics, and technology that would allow teachers to easily access information from their state and elsewhere, teaching of these disciplines could be vastly improved (e.g., NRC, 1998, 1999g). The National Science Foundation’s National Digital Library project1 could serve as the focal point