I get eSchool News updates several times a week, it seems. Maybe even every day. Yesterday brought the news that Barack Obama waas increasing the amount of money for the “Educate to Innovate” program he announced last November. We’re going to shell out $250 million for STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) education in the United States!
This works out to $1,736.11, for each school in America.
Back in this post, I pointed out that we’re planning on making some grants with this $4.6 billion for schools that will fix America’s schools, but that’s only $31,000 or so for each school in America. And it’s a challenge program, which means that schools that have already figured out how to innovate without money, will now get more money with which to innovate more… And the schools that have no innovative teachers or administrators?
At my school, we have 57 teachers. That $1700 would be around $30 for each of us, but hey… it’s only for STEM-related teachers, and we only have about twelve of those.
So that’s about $144 per teacher. Not enough for a computer for the classroom, or an interactive white board or a set of fancy calculators (and admittedly this is a false exercise, because we’re a private school and the federal government isn’t giving us any money for STEM teaching innovations).
So, gentle readers… What would you spend $144 on for STEM innovation in your classroom?