Obama Announces Funding for Science and Math Teachers

Prior to President Barack Obama's hosting of the White House Science Fair, the White House announced a series of new funding opportunities and priorities focused on science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) teachers.
by | February 7, 2012

The White House announced Tuesday a series of new grants for science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) teachers and programs.

According to a White House release, Obama will request $80 million in his budget proposal to be released on Feb. 13 for a competitive grant program for STEM teacher preparation programs. Obama also plans to devote a portion of the $300 million Teacher Incentive Fund specifically toward state and local efforts to improve pay, evaluations and professional development for STEM teachers.

“When students excel in math and science, they help America compete for the jobs and industries of the future,” Obama said in a statement. He called for the United States to produce 100,000 effective STEM teachers in the next decade. The White House also announced that private organizations, such as the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, will donate $22 million to supplement those efforts.

The president's budget will include a $100 million investment by the Nation Science Foundation to improve undergraduate postsecondary programs focused on STEM fields. In his budget, Obama will also outline a partnership between the foundation and the U.S. Department of Education, with $30 million in funding from each, to scale up "evidence-based approaches to improve student learning at K-12 and undergraduate levels," according to the White House.

The Education Department will also continue to emphasize STEM efforts in future applications for Race To The Top funding, according to the administration.

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