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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Increasing the Roles and Significance of Teachers in Policymaking for K-12 Engineering Education: Proceedings of a Convocation. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24700.
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INCREASING THE ROLES AND SIGNIFICANCE
OF TEACHERS IN POLICYMAKING FOR
K–12 ENGINEERING EDUCATION


Proceedings of a Convocation


Steve Olson, Rapporteur

Teacher Advisory Council
Division on Behavioral and Social Sciences and Education

National Academy of Engineering

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THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES PRESS
Washington, DC
www.nap.edu

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Increasing the Roles and Significance of Teachers in Policymaking for K-12 Engineering Education: Proceedings of a Convocation. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24700.
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THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES PRESS 500 Fifth Street, NW Washington, DC 20001

This project was supported by grants between the National Academy of Sciences and 100Kin10 and the Samueli Foundation, and by in-kind support from the Teaching Channel. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication do not necessarily reflect the views of any organization or agency that provided support for the project.

Digital Object Identifier: https://doi.org/10.17226/24700

Copyright 2017 by the National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.

Printed in the United States of America

Suggested citation: National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Increasing the Roles and Significance of Teachers in Policymaking for K–12 Engineering Education: Proceedings of a Convocation. Washington, DC: National Academies Press. doi: https://doi.org/10.17226/24700.

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Increasing the Roles and Significance of Teachers in Policymaking for K-12 Engineering Education: Proceedings of a Convocation. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24700.
×

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The National Academy of Sciences was established in 1863 by an Act of Congress, signed by President Lincoln, as a private, nongovernmental institution to advise the nation on issues related to science and technology. Members are elected by their peers for outstanding contributions to research. Dr. Marcia McNutt is president.

The National Academy of Engineering was established in 1964 under the charter of the National Academy of Sciences to bring the practices of engineering to advising the nation. Members are elected by their peers for extraordinary contributions to engineering. Dr. C. D. Mote, Jr., is president.

The National Academy of Medicine (formerly the Institute of Medicine) was established in 1970 under the charter of the National Academy of Sciences to advise the nation on medical and health issues. Members are elected by their peers for distinguished contributions to medicine and health. Dr. Victor J. Dzau is president.

The three Academies work together as the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine to provide independent, objective analysis and advice to the nation and conduct other activities to solve complex problems and inform public policy decisions. The National Academies also encourage education and research, recognize outstanding contributions to knowledge, and increase public understanding in matters of science, engineering, and medicine.

Learn more about the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine at www.national-academies.org.

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Increasing the Roles and Significance of Teachers in Policymaking for K-12 Engineering Education: Proceedings of a Convocation. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24700.
×

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Reports document the evidence-based consensus of an authoring committee of experts. Reports typically include findings, conclusions, and recommendations based on information gathered by the committee and committee deliberations. Reports are peer reviewed and are approved by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine.

Proceedings chronicle the presentations and discussions at a workshop, symposium, or other convening event. The statements and opinions contained in proceedings are those of the participants and have not been endorsed by other participants, the planning committee, or the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine.

For information about other products and activities of the National Academies, please visit nationalacademies.org/whatwedo.

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Increasing the Roles and Significance of Teachers in Policymaking for K-12 Engineering Education: Proceedings of a Convocation. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24700.
×

PLANNING COMMITTEE FOR CONVOCATION ON ENHANCING TEACHERS’ VOICES IN POLICYMAKING FOR K–12 ENGINEERING EDUCATION

NORMAN L. FORTENBERRY (Cochair), American Society for Engineering Education, DC

DONNA MIGDOL (Cochair), Oceanside School District, NY

LINDA M. ABRIOLA (Member, NAE), Tufts University, MA

ROBERT B. FRIEND, Boeing Phantom Works, CA

JANICE KOCH, Hofstra University (Emerita), NY

K. RENAE PULLEN, Caddo Parish Public Schools, LA

MICHAEL TOWN, Tesla STEM High School, Redmond, WA

BRUCE WELLMAN, Olathe High School, KS

National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine Staff

JAY LABOV, Senior Advisor for Education and Communication, National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine

GREG PEARSON, Scholar, National Academy of Engineering

NICOLE FLORES, Communications/Media Specialist, National Academy of Engineering (through November 30, 2016)

MARIBETH KEITZ, Web Manager, National Academy of Engineering

MATTHEW LAMMERS, Program Coordinator, Division on Behavioral and Social Sciences and Education

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Increasing the Roles and Significance of Teachers in Policymaking for K-12 Engineering Education: Proceedings of a Convocation. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24700.
×

TEACHER ADVISORY COUNCIL

MARY MARGUERITE (MARGO) MURPHY (Chair), Camden Hills Regional High School, ME

KENNETH HUFF (Vice Chair), Mill Middle School, Williamsville, NY

SARAH BAX, Hardy Middle School, DC

WINNIE GILBERT, Los Altos High School, CA

MICHAEL KENNEDY, Northwestern University, IL

JULIE OLSON, Mitchell High School, SD

K. RENAE PULLEN, Caddo Parish Public Schools, LA

JOSE RIVAS, Lennox Mathematics, Science, and Technology Academy, CA

DENNIS L. SCHATZ, Pacific Science Center, Seattle

SHEIKISHA THOMAS, Jordan High School, NC

MICHAEL TOWN, Tesla STEM High School, Redmond, WA

CLAUDIA WALKER, Murphey Traditional Academy, Greensboro, NC

BRUCE ALBERTS (Ex Officio), University of California, San Francisco

National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine Staff

JAY LABOV, Senior Advisor for Education and Communication and Staff Director

MATTHEW LAMMERS, Program Coordinator

ELIZABETH CARVELLAS, Teacher Leader

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Increasing the Roles and Significance of Teachers in Policymaking for K-12 Engineering Education: Proceedings of a Convocation. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24700.
×

Preface

Policy can be complex, and teachers need training to understand how policy shapes their classrooms. Simply asking teachers for their perspective absent a strong foundation of knowledge about the levers and frameworks of local, state and federal law is not always going to result in a productive conversation…. While engaging teachers in policy matters takes work, these efforts can pay dividends, both for teachers who get new opportunities to stretch themselves and for policymakers who can make smarter policy decisions.

Catherine E. Brown, 20151

Efforts to introduce engineering at the K–12 level have grown steadily over the past 15 years. A number of curricular and professional development initiatives have demonstrated how engineering education can have major impacts on K–12 curricula, teaching, and learning. Some of these have achieved significant scale.2 However, as with K–12 education reform and policymaking in general, most of these initiatives have not been informed to the extent they could be by the insights and concerns—the “wisdom of practice”—of experienced classroom teachers. The historical lack of involvement by K–12 teachers in education policy and decision makers is particularly a problem for education in engineering, a subject about which most K–12 educators and administrators lack deep content knowledge.

The importance of engineering in K–12 education has been raised to new levels through the 2013 publication of the Next Generation Science Standards, which increase expectations on K–12 teachers to address engineering ideas and practices alongside those of science. Additional expectations for teaching engineering may come from general interest in more integrated forms of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education, which educators view as an approach to building on current knowledge and effective practices about how people learn and policymakers view as a means for improving the readiness of the modern workforce.3 Many integrated STEM initiatives use engineering design as a way to teach and apply mathematical and scientific concepts.

___________________

1 From “Making Classrooms Work: Why Teachers Need to Be Involved in Education Policy Decisions,” US News & World Report, June 24, 2015. Available at www.usnews.com/opinion/knowledge-bank/2015/06/24/why-teachers-should-be-involved-in-education-policy-decisions, accessed March 10, 2017.

2 National Academy of Engineering and National Research Council. (2009). Engineering in K–12 Education: Understanding the Status and Improving the Prospects. L. Katehi, G. Pearson, and M. Feder, Editors. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. Available at https://www.nap.edu/catalog/12635, accessed March 10, 2017.

3 President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology. (2010). Report to the President—Prepare and Inspire: K–12 Education in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) for America’s Future. Washington, DC. Available at http://www.afterschoolalliance.org/documents/pcast-stemed-report.pdf, accessed March 10, 2017. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. (2016). Developing a National STEM Workforce Strategy: A Workshop Summary. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. Available at https://www.nap.edu/catalog/21900, accessed March 10, 2017. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. (2016). Promising Practices for Strengthening the Regional STEM Workforce Development Ecosystem. Available at https://www.nap.edu/catalog/21894, accessed March 10, 2017.

Page viii Cite
Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Increasing the Roles and Significance of Teachers in Policymaking for K-12 Engineering Education: Proceedings of a Convocation. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24700.
×

Recognizing the importance of elevating the voices of teachers in policy discussions about K–12 engineering, 100Kin104 funded the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine to facilitate a national conversation on the topic. The resulting convocation brought together stakeholders in K–12 and postsecondary education, industry, and other sectors to explore issues related to the implementation of engineering education. Reflecting the importance of teachers to these efforts, more than half of the invited participants were K–12 teacher leaders.

During the convocation, several teacher participants told us that the event was unlike any other professional development opportunity they had experienced. One commented about never before having been asked to contribute to solutions for problems that are still largely unresolved. Others noted that this was one of the few times K–12 teacher leaders were treated and respected as professionals.

The action plans shared by participating teams were diverse in topic and scope, but one common thread was the idea of taking steps toward providing sustainable professional development to grow the cadre of teacher leaders in STEM education. This was viewed as an important precursor to successful engagement of other teachers in policymaking.

However, with so much attention focused on preparing teacher leaders, our broader goal of focusing convocation discussions on the policy dimensions of K–12 engineering education was not fully realized. This is in part because implementation of engineering in K–12 education is complex, and also because the convocation lasted just a day and a half. More time and opportunities for networking among participants might have resulted in more policy-focused discussions.

Notwithstanding the challenges, we observed that the convocation provided numerous opportunities for educators at all levels and from many parts of the education system to display their wisdom of practice, their accomplishments as leaders, and their desire to think, plan, and work together to contribute to the future of engineering education in America’s K–12 schools. We are very encouraged by the connections made and initial plans developed through the convocation, and we urge readers to build on the ideas presented in this document. Doing so will help us all think more broadly about these issues and how they may be addressed with teacher leaders as full partners in this process.

Donna Migdol, Committee Cochair
Norman L. Fortenberry, Committee Cochair

___________________

4 Information about 100Kin10 is available at http://100Kin10.org (accessed March 10, 2017).

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Increasing the Roles and Significance of Teachers in Policymaking for K-12 Engineering Education: Proceedings of a Convocation. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24700.
×

Acknowledgments

This convocation proceedings has been reviewed in draft form by individuals chosen for their diverse perspectives and technical expertise, in accordance with procedures approved by the Report Review Committee of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM). The purpose of this independent review is to provide candid and critical comments that will assist the institution in making its published Proceedings as sound as possible and to ensure that the report meets institutional standards for objectivity, evidence, and responsiveness to the charge. The review comments and draft manuscript remain confidential to protect the integrity of the process.

We thank the following individuals for their review of this report:

KATIE MCMILLAN CULP, New York Hall of Science

MAURICE FRAZIER, Oscar Smith High School, Chesapeake, VA

MITCHELL J. NATHAN, Wisconsin Center for Education Research, University of Wisconsin–Madison

JACQUELYN F. SULLIVAN, Integrated Teaching and Learning Laboratory, University of Colorado

Although the reviewers listed above provided many constructive comments and suggestions, they were not asked to endorse the content of the proceedings nor did they see the final draft before its release. The review of this proceedings was overseen by DR. MARGARET HONEY, New York Hall of Science. Appointed by NASEM, she was responsible for making certain that an independent examination of this report was carried out in accordance with institutional procedures and that all review comments were carefully considered. Responsibility for the final content of this report rests entirely with the author(s) and the institution.

We sincerely thank 100Kin10 for its support of the convocation and the Samueli Foundation for making available supplemental funds so that we could provide travel support to all K–12 educators who requested it.

We also thank the Teaching Channel for its in-kind support in establishing a website where participants could submit videos about their projects and offer comments about other participants’ videos prior to the convocation to facilitate communication and networking during the event.

The work and assistance of the staff in the National Academies’ Meetings Office and Dining Services in handling all of the complex room and audio/visual requirements for this event and in making meals and refreshments quickly available to the large number of participants are also noted and greatly appreciated.

Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Increasing the Roles and Significance of Teachers in Policymaking for K-12 Engineering Education: Proceedings of a Convocation. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24700.
×

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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Increasing the Roles and Significance of Teachers in Policymaking for K-12 Engineering Education: Proceedings of a Convocation. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24700.
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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Increasing the Roles and Significance of Teachers in Policymaking for K-12 Engineering Education: Proceedings of a Convocation. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24700.
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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Increasing the Roles and Significance of Teachers in Policymaking for K-12 Engineering Education: Proceedings of a Convocation. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24700.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Increasing the Roles and Significance of Teachers in Policymaking for K-12 Engineering Education: Proceedings of a Convocation. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24700.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Increasing the Roles and Significance of Teachers in Policymaking for K-12 Engineering Education: Proceedings of a Convocation. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24700.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Increasing the Roles and Significance of Teachers in Policymaking for K-12 Engineering Education: Proceedings of a Convocation. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24700.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Increasing the Roles and Significance of Teachers in Policymaking for K-12 Engineering Education: Proceedings of a Convocation. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24700.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Increasing the Roles and Significance of Teachers in Policymaking for K-12 Engineering Education: Proceedings of a Convocation. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24700.
×
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Page viii Cite
Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Increasing the Roles and Significance of Teachers in Policymaking for K-12 Engineering Education: Proceedings of a Convocation. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24700.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Increasing the Roles and Significance of Teachers in Policymaking for K-12 Engineering Education: Proceedings of a Convocation. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24700.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Increasing the Roles and Significance of Teachers in Policymaking for K-12 Engineering Education: Proceedings of a Convocation. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24700.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Increasing the Roles and Significance of Teachers in Policymaking for K-12 Engineering Education: Proceedings of a Convocation. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24700.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Increasing the Roles and Significance of Teachers in Policymaking for K-12 Engineering Education: Proceedings of a Convocation. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24700.
×
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Engineering is a small but growing part of K–12 education. Curricula that use the principles and practices of engineering are providing opportunities for elementary, middle, and high school students to design solutions to problems of immediate practical and societal importance. Professional development programs are showing teachers how to use engineering to engage students, to improve their learning of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM), and to spark their interest in engineering careers. However, many of the policies and practices that shape K–12 engineering education have not been fully or, in some cases, even marginally informed by the knowledge of teacher leaders.

To address the lack of teacher leadership in engineering education policymaking and how it might be mitigated as engineering education becomes more widespread in K–12 education in the United States, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine held a convocation on September 30–October 1, 2016. Participants explored how strategic connections both within and outside classrooms and schools might catalyze new avenues of teacher preparation and professional development, integrated curriculum development, and more comprehensive assessment of knowledge, skills, and attitudes about engineering in the K–12 curriculum. This publication summarizes the presentations and discussions from the event.

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