Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math, including Computer Science
Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math, including Computer Science
Table of ContentsBackground
America's Strategy for STEM Education
Secretary's STEM Priority
Department Offices that Support STEM
ED Delivers Historic Investment in STEM
Open ED Funding and Other Opportunities
Examples of the Department's discretionary grants that can support STEM
Grant Applicant Resources
Call for Peer Reviewers
U.S. Department of Education STEM Newsletter
Archived STEM Newsletters
STEM Education Briefings
Archived STEM Briefings
Upcoming STEM Briefings
CTE CubeSat Finalists Announced
Rural Tech Project Finalists Announced
Other communications tools
Other Federal Agency STEM websites
Department STEM Contacts
In an ever-changing, increasingly complex world, it's more important than ever that our nation's youth are prepared to bring knowledge and skills to solve problems, make sense of information, and know how to gather and evaluate evidence to make decisions. These are the kinds of skills that students develop in science, technology, engineering, and math, including computer science—disciplines collectively known as STEM/CS. If we want a nation where our future leaders, neighbors, and workers can understand and solve some of the complex challenges of today and tomorrow, and to meet the demands of the dynamic and evolving workforce, building students' skills, content knowledge, and literacy in STEM fields is essential. We must also make sure that, no matter where children live, they have access to quality learning environments. A child's zip code should not determine their STEM literacy and educational options.
The STEM Education Strategic Plan, Charting a Course for Success: America's Strategy for STEM Education, published in December 2018, sets out a federal strategy for the next five years based on a vision for a future where all Americans will have lifelong access to high-quality STEM education and the United States will be the global leader in STEM literacy, innovation, and employment. It represents an urgent call to action for a nationwide collaboration with learners, families, educators, communities, and employers—a "North Star" for the STEM community as it collectively charts a course for the Nation's success. The Department is an active participant in each of the interagency working groups focused on implementation of the Plan.
In December 2020, the Office of Science and Technology Policy at the White House issued the Progress Report on the Implementation of the Federal STEM Education Strategic Plan. This progress report describes ongoing efforts and implementation practices across the Federal Government as it works to accomplish the goals and objectives of the Strategic Plan. This report also compiles budget information from all Federal agencies that have investments in STEM education during Fiscal Year (FY) 2019. Additionally, this document is meant to fulfill the requirements under the America COMPETES Reauthorization of 2010 that the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) must transmit a report annually to Congress at the time of the President's budget request providing an update on the STEM Education Federal portfolio performance and an inventory of Federal STEM education investments. The 2019 Progress Report was issued in October 2019
STEM is a centerpiece of the Department's comprehensive education agenda. The STEM priority has been used across the Departments' discretionary grant programs to further the Department's mission, which is "to promote student achievement and preparation for global competitiveness by fostering educational excellence and ensuring equal access."
Office of Planning, Evaluation, and Policy Development (OPEPD)
Office of Career, Adult, and Technical Education (OCTAE)
Office of Elementary and Secondary Education (OESE)
Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS)
Office of Postsecondary Education (OPE)
Office of Non-Public Education (ONPE)
Office of Educational Technology (OET)
Office of English Language Acquisition (OELA)
Institute of Educational Sciences (IES)
White House Initiatives
Federal Student Aid (FSA)
Office of Communications and Outreach (OCO)
The U.S. Department of Education announced in November 2020 that during Fiscal Year (FY) 2020, it invested $578 million to support high-quality STEM education, including computer science, for students through its discretionary and research grants. The Department reported strong progress in implementing the Administration's five-year STEM education strategy, including building on more than $819 million in STEM investments during fiscal years 2018 and 2019. Find more details here on these investments, including approximately $156 million to support projects with a focus on computer science.
"This Administration's strategic focus on STEM education will help expose America's students to new and exciting learning environments that will prepare them for in-demand, high-paying careers," said U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos. "I'm grateful to President Trump for making STEM education a priority and for putting America's students and her workforce first."
These STEM education investments deliver on President Trump's commitment to help expand opportunities in high-demand STEM careers and achieve the overall vision and goals of the five-year federal STEM education strategic plan, titled Charting A Course For Success: America's Strategy for STEM Education.
Of the FY 2020 STEM education investments, the Department awarded $141 million in new grants and $437 million to continue existing projects that are making substantial progress toward their goals. For example, Department funds will be used to prepare the STEM teacher corps for careers in the classroom, expand opportunities for low-income students to succeed in postsecondary education, and expand research and training opportunities on the improvement of students' STEM knowledge and skills, including learners with or at risk of disabilities.
Approximately $156 million supported projects with a focus on computer science. Several of the STEM investments support the Administration's Opportunity Zones Initiative, which fosters economic development and job creation in economically distressed communities.
Go here to read the full press release. Check out the "Examples of the Department's discretionary grants that can support STEM" section below for investments made in FY 2020.
New to the Department's grantmaking process? The Department offers introductory resources about its grantmaking. The Department is always seeking experts in STEM education and other fields to serve as peer reviewers of grant applications. See sections below for more details.
Below are investments made in FY 2020:
- $3.6 million for the Alaska Native Education Equity Program
- $300,000 for Braille training (rehabilitation services demonstrations and training)
- $5.1 million for the College Assistance Migrant Program (CAMP)
- $5 million for the Comprehensive Centers Program
- $185 million for the Education Innovation and Research Program (EIR) (awarded in early FY 2021)
- $124.7 million for Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs (Partnership Grants) (GEAR-UP)
- $23 million for Graduate Assistance in Areas of National Need
- $25 million for Innovative Approaches to Literacy
- $5.7 million for the Jacob K. Javits Gifted and Talented Students Education Program
- $900,000 for Migrant Education Consortium Incentive Grants (CIG)
- $29 million for the Native Hawaiian Education Program
- $12.6 million for the Minority Science and Engineering Improvement Program (MSEIP)
- $1.4 million for the Perkins Innovation & Modernization Grant Program
- $300,000 for Strengthening Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander Serving Institutions (AANAPISI)
- $2.3 million for Strengthening Native American Nontribal Serving Institutions (NASNTI)
- $1.5 million to provide special education programs in educational technology, media, and materials for students with disabilities via a cooperative agreement with the Center on Early STEM Learning for Young Children
- $9.3 million to provide special education programs educational technology, media, and materials for individuals with disabilities via Stepping Up
- $151.2 million for Federal TRIO Programs
- $73.7 million for Supporting Effective Educator Development (SEED)
- $49.4 million for the Teacher Quality Partnership (TQP)
- $28.2 million for Education Research Grants Programs
- $1.5 million for the Fulbright-Hays Doctoral Dissertation Research Abroad Program
- $4.3 million for the Small Business Innovation and Research (SBIR) Program
- $11.1 million for the Special Education Research Grants Program
- $6.3 million for Research Training in the Education Sciences
- $2.6 million for Research Training in Special Education
You can search for open discretionary grant opportunities or reach out to the Department's STEM contacts noted below. The Forecast of Funding Opportunities lists virtually all Department discretionary grant programs for FY 2021.
Recent STEM grantees include, but are not limited to, MSEIP awards, Innovation and Modernization Career and Technical Education, Education Innovation and Research awards.
The Department published in spring 2020 two new grant applicant resources. These resources were developed to (1) provide an overview of the discretionary (or competitive) grants application process and (2) offer more details intended to be used by prospective applicants, including new potential grantees. These support one of the Secretary's new administrative priorities on New Potential Grantees that was published in March 2020. They can also be found under the "Other Grant Information" on the ED's Grants webpage.
The Department is seeking peer reviewers for our Fiscal Year 2021 competitive/discretionary grant season, including in the STEM/CS areas (among others). The Federal Register notice spotlights the specific needs of the Office of Elementary and Secondary Education (OESE), the Office of Postsecondary Education (OPE), and the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS). The How to Become a Peer Reviewer slide deck provides additional information and next steps.
In February 2020, the Department created the U.S. Department of Education STEM Newsletter. Please go to our newsletter subscription page to sign-up for this great resource.January 2021
The STEM Education Briefings are live-streamed, close-captioned and archived for your convenience.
March 25, 2021 – Differing Abilities in STEM, featuring Dr. Temple Grandin (presentation slides [PDF, 13.7MB])
February 2021 – Inspiring STEM Interest (presentation slides [PDF, 3.7MB])
December 2020 – New Frontiers in K-12 Computer Science (presentation slides [PDF, 12.7MB])
November 2020 – Federal STEM Strategic Plan: 2 Years Later (presentation slides [PDF, 15.49MB]).
October 2020 – Invention Education (presentation slides [PDF, 13.13MB])
September 2020 – STEM Teacher Preparation (presentation slides [PDF, 3.5MB])
August 2020 – Cybersecurity Education (presentation slides [PDF, 10.5MB])
July 2020 – Early Math (presentation slides [PDF, 2.37MB])
June 2020 – Distance Learning
February 2020 – STEM After School
January 2020 – STEAM: Arts Supporting STEM
December 2019 – Family Engagement in STEM
November 2019 – The STEM Opportunity Index
October 2019 – Early Engineering Education and State Efforts
September 2019 – Recruiting and Retaining 100K STEM Teachers in 10 Years
July 2019 – What Do We Know about Computer Science Education?
Out of School Time Career Pathway Awardees
Under the national activities authority in the Nita M. Lowey 21st Century Community Learning Centers (21st CCLC) program and during the week of January 11, 2021, the Department announced $2,133,357 in Fiscal Year (FY) 2020 awards to four state-based partnerships to develop out of school time career pathways (OSTCP) that will offer participating students an opportunity to earn a recognized postsecondary credential such as an industry-recognized certification or apprenticeship in an in-demand industry. The project period is up to five-years.
In summer 2020, the Office of Career, Technical and Adult Education (OCTAE) launched the CTE Mission: CubeSat national challenge to bring space missions and hands-on learning to students. High schools across the country designed prototypes and created mission proposals for CubeSat projects. OCTAE's Assistant Secretary Scott Stump recently announced the five finalists, who will each receive $5,000 and in-kind prizes that they may use to build CubeSat (cube satellite) prototypes in the second phase of the challenge. To receive Phase 2 updates and other challenge news, subscribe to the CTE Mission: CubeSat newsletter.
In December 2020, the Department announced the five finalist teams in the Rural Tech Project. The $600,000 challenge aims to advance technology education, support rural educators, and prepare students for the careers of today and tomorrow. The Rural Tech Project is designed to empower educators with resources for creating technology education programs customized for their students and local needs. From June to October 2020, the Department invited rural high schools and local educational agencies to propose technology education programs that use competency-based distance learning. Entrants proposed programs focusing on a range of technology skills — from computer science and cybersecurity to robotics and aviation.
Learning in a Pandemic Webinar: The Current State of Student Learning and Resources to Support Your Students Now
Fall 2020 Back-to-School Success Stories
COVID-19 Information and Resources for Schools and School Personnel
ESEA, IDEA, and Perkins Resources
College Scorecard ― updated again on 1/15/21
Exploring Career Options – FSA
Stackable Credentials that lead to careers
Cross-agency teacher resources – prepared for the Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching Fall 2019 awardees
IES data and statistics, research and evaluation, and tools for educators
Out of School STEM Initiatives
The ED Games Expo "Goes Virtual" to Support Distance Learning
STEM Data Story — A Leak in the STEM Pipeline: Taking Algebra Early
CTE Data Story — Bridging the Skills Gap: Career and Technical Education in High School
Parent and Family Digital Learning Guide
Early Learning: STEM – Math Video
Keep Calm and Connect All Student OET Blog Series
K-12 Practitioners' Circle
STEM Innovation for Inclusion in Early Education (STEMI2E2) Center and OSEP's Early Learning Newsletter
A Transition Guide to Postsecondary Education and Employment for Students and Youth with Disabilities
CTE Research Center
Civil Rights Data Collection
Department’s Data Strategy
The following are federal agencies that the Department collaborates with to support the aims of the STEM Education Strategic Plan (see above section for more details) and support the Department's stakeholders.
- Office of Science and Technology Policy and National Science and Technology Council
- STEM Education Advisory Panel
- Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
- Department of Agriculture (USDA)
- Department of Defense (DoD)
- Department of Labor
- Department of Energy (DOE)
- National Science Foundation (NSF) and NSF INCLUDES
- National Institutes of Health (NIH) (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)
- National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education (NICE) at National Institutes of Standards and Technology (NIST) (U.S. Department of Commerce)
- National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
- Smithsonian Institute
- U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) (U.S. Department of the Interior)
- U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) (U.S. Department of Commerce)