Schools teaching girls STEM

Posted at 3:33 PM, May 18, 2017
and last updated 2017-05-23 08:08:39-04

Science, technology, engineering, and math. It's also known as STEM and is a staple now in every classroom. A major gender gap lies in the career field, and school districts are getting girls interested in STEM.

According to the census bureau, women make up 48 percent of the U.S. workforce but just 24 percent of STEM workers. Educators are trying to combat that stat. Teaching math and science has changed.

"Most adults have grown up hearing science subjects taught as silos. Chemistry didn't crossover to earth science which didn't cross over into biology at all none of that ever interacted with technology or engineering and now we're learning more that real life does not work that way. So school has to adapt," Angela Bergman with Westside Schools said.

At Westside middle school, technology is part of the curriculum.

"Business and technology class is there a  required class for all seventh graders and in that class we focus on exploration of technology and business topics. I digital media and literacy, an eighth grade elective class, students opt to take and in that class as you can see they work on stop motion animation they work on computer programming. It's just kind of the more advanced technology class," Kristeen Shabram with Westside Schools said.

More and more workshops and lessons are sprouting up to encourage young girls to maintain their interest in stem fields. Beyond the class-girls meet after school, working on a variety of projects. It starts even younger and beyond traditional STEM classes. For example, at Sunny Slope Elementary school in OPS Library time is also STEM time. A science grant allows educators to attend conventions to bring back ideas for STEM. Schools are branching beyond the typical to educate the next generations of engineers, programmers, and scientists that are female.