Posted by: JanF | February 23, 2012

Why I Vote For Democrats: Science Education

Few things illustrate the stark differences between Democrats and Republicans more clearly than the two parties’ attitudes towards education and, in particular, science education. Democrats believe that education is an investment in our country’s future and seek to expand educational opportunities for everyone. And Democrats value science and scientific inquiry.

President Barack Obama working with school children

President Barack Obama and his administration are dedicated to improving the participation of our nation’s children in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) education.

One of the early initiatives of the Obama Administration was the “Educate to Innovate” campaign, a program from the President’s Office of Science and Technology Policy .

President Obama has launched an “Educate to Innovate” campaign to improve the participation and performance of America’s students in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). This campaign will include efforts not only from the Federal Government but also from leading companies, foundations, non-profits, and science and engineering societies to work with young people across America to excel in science and math.

This video explains the program:

The Obama Administration includes actual scientists including Secretary of Energy Steven Chu, a Nobel Prize Laureate in Physics.

The Office of Science and Technology Policy does not just talk about STEM but contributed this to the President’s 2013 Budget:

February 13, 2012 — OSTP is pleased to release the following information on the science, technology, innovation, and STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) education components of the President’s FY 2013 Budget: Prepares the Next Generation of Innovators by providing $3.0 billion for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education, with an unprecedented emphasis on evidence-based improvements in teaching and learning

Other initiatives include the just completed White House Science Fair:

On Tuesday, February 7th, President Obama will host the second White House Science Fair celebrating the student winners of a broad range of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) competitions from across the country. The President will also announce key steps that the Administration and its partners are taking to help more students excel in math and science, and earn degrees in these subjects.

At the fair, the President will view exhibits of student work, ranging from breakthrough research to new inventions, followed by remarks to an audience of students, science educators and business leaders on the importance of STEM education to the country’s economic future.

The President hosted the first-ever White House Science Fair in late 2010, fulfilling a commitment he made at the launch of his Educate to Innovate campaign to inspire students to excel in math and science. As the President noted then, “If you win the NCAA championship, you come to the White House. Well, if you’re a young person and you produce the best experiment or design, the best hardware or software, you ought to be recognized for that achievement, too.”

Bill Nye the Science Guy blogs on the White House web site about the importance of scientists engineers and inventors:

Most of our successful corporations … were started by engineers—people who use science and math to create things and solve problems. For the United States to remain the world leader in technological innovation, we need more engineers and more scientists. We need more people, who can do math, design software, and create new applications for machines that have yet to come into existence.

If we choose not to engage in fundamental research—not to pursue new technologies and systems, not to discover new properties of numbers and atomic structures,not to explore the oceans and outer space—we leave that work to others, to emerging countries, who have seen from the outside what science and technology can do for a society.


Encouraging students to love and excel in science and technology and providing funding for teachers and programs promoting that cause: another reason that I Vote for Democrats and why you should too.