Secondary Education Systemic Issues: Addressing Possible Contributors to a Leak in the Science Education Pipeline and Potential Solutions
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To maintain the legacy of cutting edge scientific innovation in the United States our country must address the many pressing issues facing science education today. One of the most important issues relating to science education is the under-representation of African Americans and Hispanics in the science, technology, and engineering workforce. Foreshadowing such under-representation in the workforce are the disproportionately low rates of African American and Hispanic students attaining college degrees in science and related fields. Evidence suggests disparate systemic factors in secondary science education are contributing to disproportionately low numbers of African American and Hispanic students in the science education pipeline. The present paper embarks on a critical analysis of the issue by elucidating some of the systemic factors within secondary education that contribute to the leak in the science education pipeline. In addition, this review offers a synthesis and explication of some of the policies and programs being implemented to address disparate systemic factors in secondary schools. Finally, recommendations are offered regarding potential mechanisms by which disparities may be alleviated.
Keywordsscience education teacher quality coursework funding minority students
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