1 May 2013
AGU Science Policy Alert 13-21
Reorganization of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education programs is a primary focus in President Obama’s fiscal year 2014 (FY14) budget request to Congress, released on 10 April 2013. The FY14 budget request proposes to consolidate and restructure federal investment in STEM education by directing all related funding to three agencies: the Department of Education (ED), the National Science Foundation (NSF), and the Smithsonian Institution. More information on the President’s proposed STEM education reorganization can be found in this White House announcement.
The proposed restructuring of federal STEM education programs consolidates 90 federal programs across 11 different agencies, the largest single consolidation in the FY14 budget request. In total, nearly $180 million would be redirected from programs across the Federal Government to the aforementioned agencies.
Some agencies seeing significant cuts to STEM education programs as a result of the reorganization include:
- National Aeronautic and Space Administration: $47.5 million
- Environmental Protection Agency: $22 million
- National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration: $15 million
- Department of Energy: $14 million
The Administration states that the proposed reorganization strives to create a cohesive national STEM education strategy focused on priorities by level of education: K-12 instruction, undergraduate education, graduate fellowships, and informal STEM education activities. Under the proposal, all K-12 STEM education programs would be housed in ED; undergraduate education and graduate fellowship programs would reside in NSF; and the Smithsonian Institution would be responsible for informal education programs.
How would the President’s proposed STEM education restructure affect you and your work? Share your story with AGU or contact the White House. Testimonials and personal impact statements are valuable resources for AGU’s discussions with policy makers.
The President’s FY14 budget request will soon join the appropriations debates in Congress. If you would like to take action and inform policy makers of the importance of investment in scientific research, development, and education, please contact your legislators.