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Strategy 10: Develop STEM, Computational Thinking and Problem Solving Skills

In March of 2017, Forbes Magazine published an article titled The Cities Creating The Most Tech Jobs 2017. Nashville ranked number 7 out of the 16 featured cities with a whopping 75% growth in tech-sector jobs within a 10-year period, from 2006-2016. The boom in tech-related jobs requires a re-engineering of how Metro educates K-12 students in school and out of school, especially as it relates to empowering female students and students from underrepresented communities (e.g. gender, race/ethnicity, immigrant/refugee communities, and differently abled) to pursue tech careers.

Strategic Actions

  1. Train both teachers and education-based non-profit instructors in computational thinking and design thinking.
  2. Given Metro Nashville Public Schools’ focus on literacy, align literacy standards with computer science standards to help teachers align both mandates.
  3. Align assessments of STEM with literacy standards to help inform instruction and alignment of district priorities.
  4. Map all existing in school and out of school STEM, media, arts, humanities and computational thinking trainings, and opportunities for youth in Davidson County to identify location, cost, timeframe, gaps and scale.
  5. Build on Opportunity Now and MNPS data to track students’ STEM-related trajectories.
  6. Develop free summer opportunities for students K- 12 to enroll in STEM, media, arts, humanities and computational thinking programs, with special emphasis on scaling and creating programming for elementary students in order to ensure that older siblings can also enroll in tech-related summer experiences.
  7. Create intentional tech programs that empower students from underrepresented communities (e.g. gender, race/ethnicity, immigrant/refugee communities, and differently abled) and diverse language communities. Collaborate with local colleges and universities that have National Science Foundation (NSF) Broadening Participation grants and TRIO grants to help fund tech inclusion programs for underrepresented communities.
  8. Increase transportation options (e.g. Strive, mobile units, etc.) for students to attend STEM, media, arts, humanities and computational thinking programs throughout the week.

Case Study

Category: Promoting STEM Education

Cultivating STEM-Centered Success in Education

Through workshops, networking and recruitment, STEMteachersNYC is building a community of teachers committed to cultivating educational success in science technology, engineering and math fields. They offer year-round training in the form of workshops using the Modeling Instruction methodology to over 750 teachers in New York City. Between 2011 and 2017, the organization delivered 120 workshops.

Learn About: STEM Teachers New York City

Explore: New York City STEM Framework