Science, Technology, Engineering & Math (STEM) Education

A student builds a robot in an apprenticeship

 Why STEM Matters

To grow up prepared for the 21st century, students need to be inspired by science during their most formative years. Citizen Schools is doing what schools can’t do alone. We bring expert scientists, engineers, and mathematicians to low-income middle school students to make learning relevant and new career paths possible. In 2014-2015, approximately 4,300 volunteers taught apprenticeship courses, approximately half of which were in STEM subjects and taught by professionals from leading corporations across the country like Google, Cisco, Cognizant, Fidelity and Biogen, bringing authentic expertise and passion for STEM to the school community and building excitement for STEM among students.

Student surveys administered by Citizen Schools show that students who participated in STEM apprenticeships reported interest in STEM at more than twice national rates, suggesting high potential to help schools close STEM inspiration and achievement gaps. Read more about what Citizen Schools and our allies such as The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy and the Department of Energy’s National Lab Day  are doing to transform STEM education.

STEM and Public Policy

Citizen Schools supports the inclusion of the following principles in STEM related legislation:

  • Explicitly include middle school and middle school students as an eligible use of federal and state funds so that schools are engaging students in STEM at an earlier age that is a critical time developmentally for exploring interests and positive activities
  • Encourage partnerships between districts and schools and community based organizations, industry experts, and institutions of higher education in order to better align the K-12 school day to college and careers.
  • Allow high-performing nonprofit organizations, in addition to universities and local education agencies, to serve as lead applicants for grant programs

Learn more about the importance of STEM education>>>