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IU Southeast Starts Program for STEM Teachers

NEW ALBANY, Ind. — A university in southeast Indiana has received a $240,000 grant to help local educators update their science, technology, engineering and math courses to meet requirement changes.

Indiana University Southeast’s two-year grant is from the Indiana Commission on Higher Learning, the News and Tribune reported .

The university has created a program called “Growing Tomorrow’s STEM Teachers” with the money.

Twenty teachers from schools around the region will be able to use funding from the program to cover the cost of 12 graduate credit hours at the university. The program will also cover travel costs, conference attendance and classroom materials.

The Indiana Commission for Higher Learning began requiring teachers in dual credit classes to have at least 18 master’s credit hours in their concentration area in 2015. Teachers have until 2022 to complete the coursework.

Many teachers have degrees focused in education instead of the subject they’re teaching in, said Louis Jensen, assistant superintendent of high school education for New Albany-Floyd County Consolidated School Corp.

“They’re being asked to take more credit hours to teach the same classes they’ve been teaching for five or six years,” he said.

The GTST program has received more than double the applicants than it can support, according to Alan Zollman, an associate professor in the university’s education department and the program’s director.

“We are trying to work on creative ways we can support others that won’t be part of the grant but that will be a while off,” he said. “We want to support who we can in some way, shape or form.”


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