Smith Supports Science, Technology, Engineering and Math Education Coordination Act
Congressman Lamar Smith announced today that H.R. 1709, the STEM Education Coordination Act of 2009, which he cosponsored, was passed this week by the House 353 - 39. The legislation establishs a committee to develop a STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) education strategic plan and to coordinate federal programs and activities in support of STEM education, including at the National Science Foundation (NSF), Department of Energy, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and Department of Education.
"Science and technology are critical to national security, economic strength, and quality health care," said Smith. "We must make the necessary investments in basic research and science education to ensure that the United States remains the world's leader in technology and innovation. That is why I cosponsored this bill."
"The business and academic communities, Congress, and the Administration have all noted the lagging indicators for American innovation. This bill will help ensure that we at least do a better job of maximizing the effectiveness of current federal dollars being spent on STEM activities. We urge Congress to swiftly move the urgent legislation," said Tom Luce, President and CEO of the National Math and Science Initiative.
Smith said that he believes young people should be encouraged to study in the STEM fields.
He also supported the America COMPETES Act in the last Congress, which was signed into law and offers incentives for students to pursue careers in math and science and ensures American classrooms are filled with highly qualified teachers.
"These measures will help to ensure that future generations of Americans are prepared to meet the challenges of the 21st Century," said Smith.