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of the problem. For example, Indiana is one state that currently reports a

shortage of math and science teachers; it 18 also a state that requires only

one year of mathematics and one year of science for high school graduation.

If the Indiana Department of Public Instruction doubles the math and science

credits required for high school graduation, as is presently planned, the

problem will worsen immediately. In 1982 Indiana's four major state univer

sities graduated sufficient mathematics teachers to fiu only 58% of the

vacancies listed in Indiana schools.

In 1982 these four universities graduated

a total of three people in chemistry, Pour in earth science, four in general

science, and two in physics who were qualified to teach these subjects in

Indiana secondary schools.

Some high schools no longer even offer physics

or advanced courses in foreign language. (It 18 not necessary to list a

teacher shortage 1f you have dropped the course.) The statistics about

our shortages are grim; but they do not reveal how truly serious the problem


In part, schools now manage the problem of teacher shortage by dropping

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Student Interest and Competence in Mathematics, Science, and Foreign

Languages. Most of the facts presented to us deal with declines in high

school student performance on standardized examinations, the low rates of student participation in secondary school courses, and the growth in remedial courses in college. But the problem begins earlier than the facts suggest.

Students have lit le opportunity to study mathematics, science, and foreign

language in the elementary grades, where such subjects typically begin in

other nations. The result is that our students acquire fears or phobias

toward these subjects before they reach secondary schools. Attitudes are

set early. Few students choose a career involving math, science, or foreign

language in college if they have not acquired a sound background in these

subjects in junior high and senior high school. Most of our elementary school

teachers have little background in these subjects and tend to give them less


We shall not solve the problem of inadequate science, mathematics,

and foreign language instruction until we begin to have a greater impact on

instruction in the elementary schools as it relates to these subject areas.

Yet, consider the magnitude of retraining more than 1 million elementary

school teachers,

Worker Competence. Much attention has been directed to such issues as

inadequate preparation for college, shortages of engineers, and other problems

affecting the best educated of our population.

Too little attention, in my

view, has been devoted to the mathematics, science, and technology competence

that will be required of all Americans.

The fact is that the kind of education

that everyone will need to participate in an increasingly scientific, technological,

globally-interconnected, information-processing, service-oriented society is not

the same education we deemed sufficient in the past. The ability of our schools

and colleges to help us through a period of rapid transformation of the work

place will likely prove decisive for the economic future of our society.

Currently 20 million workers, 20 per cent of the labor force, are employed in

blue collar manufacturing. By 2005 it has been estimated that only seven to

twelve million workers, or five to ten percent of the work force, will be

engaged in blue collar manufacturing jobs. The decline in birth rates, the

need for greater worker productivity in order to make our products more

competitive with those of other nations, and the appearance of entirely new

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products and services will force curriculum changes on the schools.

Following is a list of jobs that are forecast to be available in 1990.*

Many of these jobs did not even exist ten years ago.

Consider their implica

tions for science, mathematics, and education in technology.

Industrial Laser Process Technician 2,500,000 jobs

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It is not likely that the schools and colleges can provide all of the

particular technical skills such workers will require. But industries will

demand greater entry-level performance in all of the basic skills, if workers

are to acquire the technical skills needed.

In short, schools must educate

to new levels of "literacy" that include: math literacy, science literacy,

computer literacy, and ability to read technical manuals and other materials

appropriate to the job.

For the past 15 to 20 years, we have asked the public schools to pursue

two main goals: increase access to schooling and equalize opportunity for all

groups in our society. By these criteria the schools have been remarkably

We provide formal schooling for more full-time students than do


*Marvin Cetron and Thomas O'Toole. "Careers with a future: Where the Jobs Will Be in the 1990's." The Futurist (June, 1982) 14-15.

most other Western nations.

More than 75 percent of American youth ages 15-19

are full-time students; comparable per centages for youth of the same age are

51 percent for France and Germany, 44 percent for Great Britain, and 40 per cent

for Italy. We have also shown progress in equalizing opportunity for all

Americans, regardless of race, social class, or ethnic identity. Thirty years ago approximately 55 per cent of white students graduated from high school

whereas only 30 percent of black students graduated. Today, 85 per cent of

white students and 75 percent of black students complete high school.

We do

not want to lose these gains, but now we must ask whether the kind of schooling

we are providing is sufficient.

It is not enough merely to complete high school

or attend a college. Education must be closely geared to the kind of society

in which young people will live and the kinds of careers they will have.


should be obvious that there is a considerable gap between what the schools

provide now and what they must be able to offer in the future.

The Appropriate Response to these Problems at various Levels of Government, and by the Private Sector

The effort to bring about changes in schooling so as to provide a proper

education for Americans now and in the future will require cooperation among

all levels of government

local, state, and Federal

and with the private


I wish to postpone my comments on the Federal role until the last

section of this paper.

And rather than offer general comments about what state

and local governments can do in collaboration with the private sector, I should

like to report briefly on some efforts underway in Indiana.

First of all, it should be noted that Indiana

like its sister Great

Lakes states

has been hit hard by the recent recession. Unemployment in

January was 13.8 percent; in some cities such as Kokomo, Anderson, and Fort

Wayne, unemployment has been hovering near 20 per cent.

In spite of this


or perhaps even because of it

Indiana's political and business

leaders have decided that Hoosiers should devote more attention to their

schools. Approximately one year ago, the Governor, with the advice and support

of the ceral Assembly, appointed a Select Advisory Commission for Primary

and Secondary Education; Commission members include representatives from

both Houses and both political parties of the General Assembly and lay people

drawn from communities across the state. They have submitted a preliminary

report whose recommendations have already taken the form of legislation; a

final report is due within a year.

Last summer and fall, a group of scientists, mathematicians, and

educators at Indiana University held discussions on what could be done to

advance the cause of science and mathematics instruction in the state of


One result of their discussions was a state-wide conference held

on October 19, 1982 on the Bloomington campus of Indiana University.


than 300 persons from all sections of the state attended the meeting to hear

leaders from government, business, labor, higher education, and the public

schools express their concern about the status of science and mathematics

instruction and what should be done about it. (A copy of the conference

report is attached to this testimony.) At the end of the conference the

participants approved a set of recommendations aimed at strengthening math

and science instruction in our state. Many of these recommendations have

subsequently been adopted by relevant groups.

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