Science After School (2004)
The Coalition for Science After School was launched January 28, 2004 at the Santa Fe Institute, home to the world’s leading researchers on the study of complexity. Against the dazzling backdrop of the New Mexican mesa, 40 educational leaders from diverse but overlapping domains—science, technology, engineering and mathematics education and after-school programs—met to grapple with three emerging, important trends in youth development and science learning in this country: 1. An explosion in the number of U.S. youth attending after-school programs, and increasing links between school and after-school curricula, funding, and accountability 2. An imminent, renewed national focus on K-12 science education with the advent of federally-mandated science testing 3.The extraordinary potential of after-school programs to enrich student learning through inquiry-based, hands-on science. The conference, funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF), gathered leaders with a broad range of relevant knowledge, resources, and experiences to strategize ways to converge these trends in support of our nation’s youth. The conference was convened by the leaders of three major science and mathematics R&D organizations—the Exploratorium in San Francisco, the Lawrence Hall of Science at UC Berkeley, and TERC in Cambridge, Massachusetts.