The AustSTEM Foundation is committed to raising STEM literacy in Australian classrooms
Our purpose is to work to ensure all students finish school with a strong foundation knowledge in STEM and related skills.
Their STEM journey begins in Primary school, and this is the starting point for the design of our educational tools and programmes
Our purpose and aims align and support the goals; areas for national action; and guiding principles of the Education Council's National STEM School Education Strategy
What is STEM?
Dr Linda Pfeiffer wrote in an Explainer article for the Sydney Morning Herald in 2017 that
“ .... STEM is really a way of thinking. It is about the skills required to learn science, technology and mathematics, and how engineering and design processes and principles are used to achieve an outcome.”
Learn more →
A 2018 ACER Report notes that:
“An analysis indicates that performance on national and international assessments in mathematics, science and ICT has not changed in one to two decades. “
The latest results from the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) published in December 2019 show that Australian students have been steadily falling behind their international peers in Mathematics, Science, and Reading for at least the last decade.
An average 15 year old in remote Australia is around 1.5 years behind metropolitan students in Science, and significantly below the OECD average in Mathematics.
The issues giving rise to these depressing statistics have been extensively researched. Those that AustSTEM seeks to address are:
Lifting teachers' skills and confidence in teaching STEM
Lack of technology equity across Australian schools
Limited use of technology to enhance subjects across the curriculum (Integrated Learning)
Complexity of existing technology education tools
AustSTEM is taking a whole-of-school approach in tackling these issues across two broad fronts
Teacher professional learning and support through its STEM Experiential Learning Journey programme
Simplification of tools with the Kookaberry technology platform
Further trials of the Journey are being planned in schools for 2021, and interest in the Kookaberry as an enhancement to many projects and STEM activities is growing.
If you would like to find out more about how your school or institution can participate in this exciting Australian STEM education initiative please click on the link below