Today, Discovery Education, a leading provider of digital content and professional development in K-12 schools; USAA; and the Texas ASCD, an association for teaching, learning and leading, announced a new multi-year investment to support science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) career development and financial literacy in San Antonio-area middle and high schools. Named STEMvest, this innovative education initiative will reach thousands of educators and students in middle and high schools across area public school districts.
Made possible by philanthropic support from USAA, this regional education initiative empowers area educators with the dynamic digital resources and professional development they need to create a culture of STEM teaching and learning in their classrooms. The digital learning environments created by this program will improve the STEM and financial literacy skills of area students, and will prepare them for success beyond graduation. The program is offered at no cost to participating school districts.
STEMvest resources available to educators, students and families through this initiative include:
- STEMinars: Dynamic visual, on-demand online professional development for San Antonio educators that provide a foundational understanding of STEM and highlight program resources.
- Science Techbook™: An award-winning digital textbook for middle school students in San Antonio that includes hands-on labs, digital explorations, an interactive glossary, and data analysis activities that help teach students to read, write, and think like scientists.
- Financial Literacy Interactives: Engaging, digital experiences to help teach high school students how to make responsible choices about personal finance. These self-paced activities align to the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) and are perfect for in-class instruction, self-directed student engagement or at-home learning with the family.
- STEMCamp: A series of standards-aligned curricula for use as part of summer camps, after-school STEM programs or wherever support is needed. STEMCamp combines hands-on labs, engineering challenges, digital investigations, and more – all designed to immerse kids in the grand challenges of science set forth by the National Academy of Engineering.
Educators at Northside Independent School District’s Anson Jones Middle School will participate in Discovery Education’s STEMFormation model, which provides specialized focus and instruction on STEM education and professional development. A comprehensive, three-year system of professional development, STEMformation helps educators strengthen and sustain a culture of STEM at individual school sites and guides educators as they master STEM instructional strategies. Northside educators will also be empowered to create modern digital learning environments with Discovery Education Streaming Plus™, a comprehensive service of standards-aligned digital resources to supplement instruction across all curricular areas and address multiple learning styles.
“A great STEM experience can really jumpstart a student’s engagement in learning,” said Deborah Rice, K-12 STEM Specialist, in Judson ISD. “With the new digital resources and professional development I’ll be receiving from Discovery Education through the STEMvest program, I’ll have the tools and know-how I need to create a great STEM learning environment and encourage responsible financial decision-making.”
“It’s a powerful combination to deliver STEM and financial programs together,” said Harriet Dominique, USAA senior vice president of corporate responsibility. “Conversations with area administrators and teachers made clear the need for results-driven STEM professional development for teachers and relevant, engaging STEM and financial literacy content for students to help them better prepare for future careers. USAA is thrilled to support this effort for the San Antonio community.”
In addition, the Discovery Education Community will support the educators in STEMvest districts as they transform students’ learning experiences with digital media. A global community of education professionals, the Discovery Education Community connects members across school systems and around the world through social media, virtual conferences, and in-person events, fostering valuable networking, idea sharing, and inspiration.
“Texas ASCD is committed to helping our states’ education leaders evolve their professional practice to meet the changing needs of today’s students,” said Dr. Yolanda Rey, Executive Director of Texas ASCD. “This initiative will provide educators across the San Antonio area with proven digital resources and strategies they can immediately integrate into classroom instruction to support the success of all learners.”
“Discovery Education is proud to join forces with USAA and Texas ASCD in support of our shared mission to provide San Antonio area students the STEM and financial literacy skills they need to find success in college and career,” said Phillip Mikula, Director – Education Partnerships, Discovery Education. “Together, we are delivering to educators the dynamic digital resources and professional development they need to create immersive learning experiences for all students. We look forward to collaborating closely with the talented teams at both TXASCD and USAA on this outstanding education initiative.”
To learn more about STEMvest, please visit www.STEMVestSA.com
The USAA family of companies provides insurance, banking, investments, retirement products and advice to 12 million current and former members of the U.S. military and their families. Known for its legendary commitment to its members, USAA is consistently recognized for outstanding service, employee well-being and financial strength. USAA membership is open to all who are serving our nation in the U.S. military or have received a discharge type of Honorable – and their eligible family members. Founded in 1922, USAA is headquartered in San Antonio. For more information about USAA, follow us on Facebook or Twitter (@USAA), or visit usaa.com.
About Texas ASCD
Founded in 1947, Texas Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (Texas ASCD) is a non-profit organization committed to improving teaching and learning for the success of all learners. It has a diverse membership of approximately 2,500 superintendents, principals, teachers, curriculum directors, staff developers, students and professors. Texas ASCD is a state affiliate of International ASCD. In the ever-changing world of education, Texas ASCD remains on the cutting edge of educator needs. What remains unchanged, and as vibrant today as it was in its infancy, is the commitment and dedication to lifelong learning for educators. Texas ASCD has 12 regional affiliates, spanning the state. Regional affiliates, the liaison between Texas ASCD and local schools, concentrate on regional policy issues, and offer professional learning to their members. For more information, please visit: www.txascd.org
About Discovery Education
Discovery Education is the global leader in standards-based digital content for K-12, transforming teaching and learning with award-winning digital textbooks, multimedia content, professional development, and the largest professional learning community of its kind. Serving 4.5 million educators and over 50 million students, Discovery Education’s services are in half of U.S. classrooms, 50 percent of all primary schools in the UK, and more than 50 countries. Discovery Education partners with districts, states, and like-minded organizations to captivate students, empower teachers, and transform classrooms with customized solutions that increase academic achievement. Discovery Education is powered by Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the number one nonfiction media company in the world. Explore the future of education at www.discoveryeducation.com.
Stephen Wakefield, Discovery Education