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Saturday, January 20, 2018

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Tom Luce says education is the basis of economic prosperity
Jacqueline Beretta

September, 2007

Tom Luce will speak at the 2nd Annual Learning about Learning Education Conference in San Antonio on February 7, 2008 in San Antonio.

“Our standard of living, our way of life, and our national security are dependent on the success of education in our public schools in order for us to succeed in the 21st century,” said Tom Luce, Former U.S. Assistant Secretary of Education. “Education is the intersection of every issue we have today in Texas,” Luce added.

“We are in a global economy today where every job is a mouseclick away. To be able to compete at the high end with creative innovation means we must learn the basics and appreciate what hard work and discipline mean.” We must be able to compete beyond our borders which really no longer exist. The Internet has opened up vast possibilities and competition worldwide, so we must not fall behind and talent is important.

Luce said that the United States has a plan to get our students to grade level by 2014. Slowly but surely progress is being made through pilot programs that have proven successful. Luce said, “There are pockets across the country where successful programs have made huge differences, so now it’s time to build the whole suit using successful proograms from across the country.”

Education is a $25 billion dollar business with 4.3 million customers, 6, 500 campuses, 1052 districts, and 375,000 employees. While Luce said we can’t change it all overnight, we must plug away for continuous improvement of 5% a year, to create change within one generation. And part of the improvement includes more classes to prepare us for all the technology we come in contact with every day.

More math & science

Think about it – we use math and science for almost everything today. From computers to mobile phones to remote controls….every one of these things needs some knowledge of technology including math and/or science. People who don’t keep up with all of this are standing in a time warp – frozen in time and could be incapable of keeping up.

In an interview with Bloomberg News Luce said, “Most of the good-paying jobs that'll be created in this country in the future will require a whole lot more math and science literacy than in the past.”

Launched in March 2007, the National Math and Science Initiative (NMSI) was developed in response to the call for action by the National Academies’ 2005 blue ribbon panel report, Rising Above the Gathering Storm. According to the panel of 20 experts, improving American students’ performance in math and science coursework is the most effective way to increase the United States’ global competitiveness. ExxonMobil Corporation announced its support for the initiative with a commitment of $125 million.

Grants, each providing up to $13.2 million over the next six years, will help fund training and incentive programs for AP® and Pre-AP® courses. Research demonstrates that students who have access to strong AP® programs are more prepared to do college level work in math, science, and engineering.

In addition to the AP® grants, NMSI will offer funding opportunities to many universities across the nation for UTeach programs, which encourage math and science majors to pursue teaching credentials during their undergraduate education. Recipients of the UTeach grants will be announced in October of this year. Non-profit entities in twenty-eight states applied for this first round of AP® grants, and 52 universities have applied for the UTeach program.

The AP® grants announced include extensive training of teachers, identification and cultivation of lead teachers, additional time on task for students, and financial incentives based on academic results. Over five years, schools with training and incentive programs for AP® and pre-AP® courses experienced four and five times more growth in students scoring three or higher on AP® exams in math and science, respectively, than those Texas schools without the program.

If we are to remain competitive - we must support American public education…help our students achieve the higest goals right now. Help educators raise our standards, expect the best, and watch our kids deliver. I honestly believe that our children will deliver what is expected of them.

Expect the best! And you will get it. Check out the NMSI at


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