On Feb. 11, NJSBA Executive Director Dr. Lawrence S. Feinsod hosted a meeting of the state’s education organizations to discuss The New Jersey STEM Innovation Fellowship being offered by Math for America (MfA), a nationally recognized education nonprofit organization.

MfA is offering a one-year fellowship with a $5,000 stipend that is initially open to experienced K – 5 educators who teach math in New Jersey public elementary schools. To apply, teachers should visit www.innovateSTEMnj.org. The program is strongly supported by Gov. Phil Murphy.

Thirty teachers will be selected as fellows for the pilot year of the program, which will focus on improving math instruction in the classroom. Fellows will attend a two-day summer institute on August 22 and 23 at Montclair State University. Throughout the school year, fellows will implement a brief,  research-based math teaching routine called “number strings” that help students – particularly in high-needs schools – develop computational thinking skills.

Deadline for applications is March 31, 2019. To apply, teachers should visit www.innovateSTEMnj.org.

Fellows will attend a two-day summer institute on August 22 and 23 at Montclair State University, and then attend monthly workshops hosted after school by participating universities in their region.

“New Jersey has some of the best public school teachers in the nation, who are committed to helping students reach their greatest potential,” said Governor Phil Murphy. “This Math for America pilot will help teachers implement new, STEM-based teaching practices and will enable them to further provide our children with the skills they need to prosper in the innovation economy.”

The summer institute hosted by Montclair State University will prepare teachers to bring number strings to their classrooms throughout the year. As part of the application process, fellows are required to secure the support of their school building and school district leaders, including principals and superintendents, to use the innovation to enhance their existing math curricula.

“Number strings are brief teaching routines that only take about ten-minutes to execute, but have been shown to boost teachers’ confidence in facilitating mathematical discussions, and substantially improve student-learning outcomes,” said Michael Driskill, National Director of Advocacy at MƒA. “We are excited to build strong relationships through this fellowship with school and district leaders in New Jersey who trust teachers to drive innovation from their classrooms.”

MƒA developed the new program with feedback and support from several key stakeholders in New Jersey including the Murphy Administration, New Jersey Department of Education, and JerseyCAN, an advocacy group that supports equitable access to STEM education for students. The fellowship is funded with support from the Overdeck Family Foundation, PSEG Foundation, Celgene Corporation, Becton, Dickinson and Company (BD), and the Maher Charitable Foundation.

About MƒA At MƒA, we’ve created fellowships for accomplished mathematics and science teachers. Our model is based on the belief that collaboration, continued learning, and genuine respect enables teachers to grow professionally and provides long-term career satisfaction. This is a remarkable community of teachers who stay in the profession longer and define what teaching excellence means. These are teachers who inspire and motivate their colleagues. They change the lives of their students. Learn more at MathForAmerica.org.