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Science Friction

A shortage of high-school science teachers and a lack of elementary and middle-school specialists contributed to the low state test scores released last week, experts say.

A shortage of high-school science teachers and a lack of elementary and middle-school specialists contributed to the low state test scores released last week, experts say.   "It's an institutional problem," said Keith Sheppard, a science education professor at Columbia University Teachers College. "From kindergarten to high school, the system doesn't work here. It's not serving the kids."  In elementary and middle school, teachers can apply for science positions regardless of their experience. They can also be assigned to fill open science slots.

Science teachers also tackle the subject with minimal resources; most elementary school science teachers don't have their own classrooms, teachers said, and often pay for their own materials and go to teaching workshops over the summer.  The Department of Education launched five incentive programs in recent years to attract qualified science teachers, and hired 488 new ones from August to October. 

This article appeared in the November 18, 2006 edition of the New York Post.

http://www.nypost.com/seven/11192006/news/regionalnews/science_friction_regionalnews_angela_montefinise.htm

Published Monday, Nov. 20, 2006

Science Friction

A shortage of high-school science teachers and a lack of elementary and middle-school specialists contributed to the low state test scores released last week, experts say.   "It's an institutional problem," said Keith Sheppard, a science education professor at Columbia University Teachers College. "From kindergarten to high school, the system doesn't work here. It's not serving the kids."  In elementary and middle school, teachers can apply for science positions regardless of their experience. They can also be assigned to fill open science slots.

Science teachers also tackle the subject with minimal resources; most elementary school science teachers don't have their own classrooms, teachers said, and often pay for their own materials and go to teaching workshops over the summer.  The Department of Education launched five incentive programs in recent years to attract qualified science teachers, and hired 488 new ones from August to October. 

This article appeared in the November 18, 2006 edition of the New York Post.

http://www.nypost.com/seven/11192006/news/regionalnews/science_friction_regionalnews_angela_montefinise.htm

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