The promise, importance and challenge of educating the students of today for the jobs of tomorrow was the focus of a powerful presentation on STEM Education in Cherry Creek Schools, which was shared with parents and community members during the Oct. 8 Parents’ Council meeting.
Science, technology, engineering and mathematics, or STEM Education, is essential to our students’ future success. Seventy percent of all existing jobs have a technical component and 90% of all future jobs will require technological knowledge, according to the Center for Educational Policy Analysis.
Dr. Scott Siegfried, Assistant Superintendent for Educational Support Services, explained that the district is "working to develop a relevant instructional technology plan that will guide district-wide efforts through the year 2025 - the year our current kindergartners will graduate from high school and enter college and the workforce."
Chief Information Officer Ben Startzer talked about the challenge of keeping up with the exponential rate of technological change in our world. For example, Cherry Creek has 20,000 computers, but 66% of them are already obsolete. “It’s a daunting job, getting our kids ready for 2025,” said Startzer.
Richard Charles, Director of STEM Education, talked about the promise of STEM Education – how it can help increase academic achievement and prepare students for the high-demand jobs of the future, which are critical to our country’s future economic success.
Finally, Dr. Floyd Cobb, Director of Curriculum and Instruction, updated parents on what the district is doing to ensure that teachers are prepared to help students move from “answer-getting” to “problem-solving.”
“They have all the answers in their pockets,” said Cobb, referring to the smartphones that allow students to access a world of information instantly. “Our challenge is to make sure they know how to use that information.”
For more information on STEM Education in Cherry Creek Schools, visit http://www.cherrycreekschools.org/STEM/Pages/default.aspx. For more information about Parents’ Council, visit www.ccparentscouncil.org.