Federal Law and Regulations

U.S. Department of Education Issues Guidance for Schools on Leveraging Federal Funding to Support STEM Education

by Ernie Melcher

The U.S. Department of Education recently issued a Dear Colleague Letter to states, school districts, schools and education partners on how to maximize federal funds to support and enhance innovative science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education for all students.

The letter serves as a resource for decreasing the equity and opportunity gaps for historically underserved students in STEM and gives examples of how federal funds—through formula grant programs in the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act—can support efforts to improve instruction and student outcomes in STEM fields.

Outlined in the letter are examples of allowable uses of federal funds that can support the development, implementation, and expansion of STEM experiences to help improve student achievement in the 2016-17 school year. The examples include recommendations for both improving access for students and supporting educators in STEM disciplines, including computer science.

The full U.S. Department of education press release is available at http://www.ed.gov/news/press-releases/us-department-education-issues-guidance-schools-leveraging-federal-funding-support-stem-education

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