Science, technology and maths education in the spotlight

5 November 2015 -

Some of Australia's best and brightest scientific minds are joining forces in Sydney today to shape a new Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Education strategy.

Hosted by NSW Education Minister Adrian Piccoli, the national STEM education summit also brings together leaders from industry and education to discuss ways to adapt education as technology advances and the world changes.

"It is vital that schools keep pace with developments in STEM because these areas are bringing changes to everyone's lives at an increasing pace," Mr Piccoli said.

"Young people need fundamental skills in mathematics, to be scientifically literate, and literate in technologies if they are to thrive in the careers of tomorrow.

"A solid foundation in these subjects gives students the critical thinking, creative and problem-solving skills that can help drive innovation in our evolving economy."

Along with leaders from industry and education, the summit is being addressed by Australia's Chief Scientist Professor Ian Chubb and incoming Chief Scientist Dr Alan Finkel.

Education ministers across Australia have agreed on the need for a national STEM education strategy and NSW is the leading the way in educational reform.

"We brought this group together to get their views on what the education system needs to do to increase student engagement in STEM and how industry and universities can support schools in doing this," Mr Piccoli said.

"In NSW, we have kicked things off by committing to retraining more than 300 teachers as maths and science specialists, opening a virtual selective high school and allocating additional support for new primary education degrees specialising in STEM subjects.

"This is a good start, but we know there's more work to be done. That's why we have called together the best minds to map out a better future for our students."


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