WASHINGTON, Aug. 13 (UPI) -- The U.S. National Science Board has approved a plan for 21st century science, technology, engineering and mathematics, or STEM, education.
The board last week unanimously adopted a motion to release for public comment a plan to increase coordination of STEM education -- both horizontally among states and vertically through grade levels -- and increase the supply of qualified K-12 STEM teachers.
Among the recommended actions, STEM education programs at the National Science Foundation would be increased to address the needs of the United States for a competitive, well-educated workforce.
The final version of the plan is to be released during the board's Oct. 3 meeting, the day before the historic 50th anniversary of the launch of the former Soviet Union's Sputnik satellite -- the first man-made object to orbit Earth.
The National Science Board was established by Congress in 1950 to provide oversight for the National Science Foundation, which is an independent federal agency that supports fundamental research and education with an annual budget of $5.5 billion.