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PTAs and Schools Awarded Grants to Engage Families in STEM Education

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Heidi May Wilson, Senior Manager, Media Relations
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Grants support STEM + Families initiative to increase student access to STEM experiences

ALEXANDRIA, Va., (Nov. 29, 2017)—National PTA is pleased to award over $97,000 in grants this fall to PTAs and schools across the country to engage families in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education. The grants are part of the association’s STEM + Families initiative.

“Family engagement is essential to strengthen STEM education, bridge the STEM gap and help all children realize their fullest potential,” said Jim Accomando, president of National PTA. “We are pleased to equip PTAs and schools nationwide with resources to engage families in STEM education and help foster children’s understanding of and excitement for STEM.”

Thirty local PTAs have been selected to receive a $1,000 National PTA STEM + Families Science Grant, plus $400 in materials to conduct science experiments with families. Minnesota PTA, Ohio PTA, Oklahoma PTA, Rochester Community PTA in Mich. and Wake County PTA Council in N.C. also have been chosen to receive a science grant of $3,000 each, plus $1,000 for materials. The grants are sponsored by Bayer.

Thirty-five PTAs have been awarded a $1,000 National PTA STEM + Families Math Grant, sponsored by Mathnasium.

With the math and science grants, the PTAs and schools will:

  • Engage families using fun, hands-on learning experiences at math nights and science festivals
  • Educate families about STEM literacy, STEM careers and STEM education pathways and empower them to support their children’s success in STEM
  • Connect families and students to STEM enrichment opportunities and professional mentors

In addition to the grants, 50 PTAs have been selected to receive a package of educational games from logic and STEM game maker ThinkFun to use to host a STEM + Families game night. One hundred PTAs also have been chosen to receive a mini game package from ThinkFun.

“We are grateful to Bayer, Mathnasium and ThinkFun for supporting the efforts of PTAs to engage families in STEM education and increase access to STEM experiences for all students,” added Nathan R. Monell, CAE, National PTA executive director. “Including families as meaningful partners in STEM education and career pathways is critical to inspire the next generation of STEM professionals and ensure the long-term economic success of our nation.”

STEM + Families is a national effort to engage entire families in STEM experiences at school, at home, in the community and with digital learning environments to support students’ success in STEM. The goal of the initiative is to spark an interest in STEM education, inspire families and communities to explore STEM education and career opportunities, and engage family members in shared learning experiences.

National PTA announced the grant and game package recipients live on Facebook. Visit National PTA’s Facebook page to view the video.

About National PTA

National PTA® comprises millions of families, students, teachers, administrators, and business and community leaders devoted to the educational success of children and the promotion of family engagement in schools. PTA is a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit association that prides itself on being a powerful voice for all children, a relevant resource for families and communities, and a strong advocate for public education. Membership in PTA is open to anyone who wants to be involved and make a difference for the education, health, and welfare of children and youth. For more information, visit PTA.org