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Florida STEM Strategic Plan released

The Florida Center for Research in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (FCR-STEM) released the Florida STEM Strategic Plan earlier this month. The plan is a timely contribution to the Florida Chamber Foundation’s Talent Supply and Education Caucus deliberations, which earlier in the year identified innovation in the areas of STEM education as its highest strategic priority. The FCR-STEM plan provides Florida a coordinated, informed and strategic path to be competitive in the global economy.

STEM is an acronym for the fields of study of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. Students in Florida currently perform below students in many other states and nations on science and mathematics assessments. Florida also trails other states and nations in the initiative to align STEM education and workforce needs, adopt globally competitive standards for all STEM fields, and create a fertile environment for innovation.

“The release of this Plan comes at a critical time in the Sunshine State’s economic transition,” said Dale A. Brill, Ph.D., president of the Florida Chamber Foundation. “I look forward to the impact of this contribution to the Caucus process in pursuit of a more globally competitive position.”

The STEM Strategic Task Force that developed this plan consisted of more than 70 members of the business, industry, education, workforce and economic development, policy and philanthropic communities. The task force identified three strategic goals that include measurable objectives and action items contained in the plan. The identified goals are:

  1. Increase the percentage of students successful at each level to ensure our diverse population is:
    1. Capable of conducting real-world STEM projects and inquiry;
    2. Capable of authentic and collaborative problem solving;
    3. Proficient in applying multidisciplinary knowledge and skills through STEM;
    4. Proficient in English and other languages in order to succeed on a global scale; and
    5. Knowledgeable about and interested in STEM careers.
  2. Increase the quality and quantity of STEM educators.
  3. Create a statewide sustainable STEM leadership organization to align existing and emerging STEM initiatives and represent Florida as one voice in meeting STEM demands.

“We now have a valuable contribution to inform discussions occurring across all four fields of STEM as a major component of school reform,” said Brill. “With the support of educators, business partners and our community leaders, Florida will be positioned to grow and prosper for years to come.”

The Florida STEM Strategic Plan can be viewed in its entirety at http://www.lsi.fsu.edu/centers/fcrstem/resources/documents/floridaSTEM_strategic_plan_2011.pdf.


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