This program supports fellowships
and associated training that enable graduate students
and advanced undergraduates in science, technology,
engineering, and mathematics to serve in K-12 schools
as resources knowledgeable about both the content and
applications of these disciplines. Academic institutions
apply for awards to support fellowship activities.
At WWU each graduate student Fellow will receive full tuition and a $30,000 stipend for one year of their Masters graduate program in Biology, Chemistry, or Geology. Institutions are also responsible for: 1) selecting Fellows;
2) partnering with school districts for placement of
Fellows in schools; 3) providing appropriate training
for Fellows, and 4) designing and implementing an effective
mechanism for documenting the outcomes of the project.
The Fellows serve as resources for teachers in science
and mathematics instruction. Expected outcomes include
improved communication and teaching skills for the
Fellows, enriched learning by K-12 students, professional
development opportunities for GK-12 Teachers, and strong
partnerships between institutions of higher education
and local school districts.
The vision of Catalysts for Reform is to apply the
strengths of Fellow-Teacher-Faculty partnerships to
improve learning in middle school science among diverse
student populations. The project unites Western Washington
University (WWU) science faculty and GK-12 Fellows
with the middle school teachers of four neighboring
school districts: Bellingham, Mount Vernon, Nooksack
Valley and the Lummi Tribal School.
The goals of Catalysts for Reform strongly complement the vision of the North
Cascades and Olympic Science Partnership (NCOSP), an NSF Math and Science
Partnership program. The involvement of science graduate students adds a
vital component to the large-scale professional development initiative of
The major goals of the “Catalysts for Reform” GK-12 project
- Improve the teaching and communication skills of WWU science graduate
- Enhance the science learning experiences of middle school students.
- Strengthen partnerships between WWU and the GK-12 districts.
- Contribute evidence-based outcomes to the learning and teaching knowledge