Specifically citing its PALS (Partnerships to Advance Learning in STEM) initiative, NPSS, whose mission is “to recruit, screen, train, support, and engage an additional 250,000 caring adults in roles serving as tutors, mentors, student success coaches, wraparound service coordinators, and post-secondary transition coaches,” welcomes ASSET as a Supporting Champion.
PALS, created by ASSET as a crisis response to the COVID-19 pandemic, works with colleges and universities in Western Pennsylvania to train their students who are studying to become teachers to deliver high-impact tutoring virtually to K-12 students in under-resourced communities who could not otherwise access such one-on-one instructional support.
Over the next three years, ASSET will work with other leaders from non-profit organizations, corporations, philanthropy, state and local agencies, and state service commissions that inform and support the design, implementation, and learning of the NPSS.
“ASSET is proud to be part of the White House’s National Partnership for Student Success. Our goals are aligned and we want to share our PALS program with others to grow the numbers of children who are getting the learning recovery support they need post-pandemic,” said Sarah Toulouse, Executive Director, ASSET Inc. “At the same time, ASSET is also excited about our new partnership with Beyond100K which will build on our collective work of recruiting, retaining and supporting teachers in the coming decades.”
Creating the Next Generation of STEM Teachers
In teaming up with Beyond100K, ASSET and other partners will work toward the organization’s recently announced “Moonshot goal” of preparing and retaining 150,000 new science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) teachers over the next 10 years. It also will put special emphasis on preparing and retaining Black, Latinx, and Native American teachers as part of creating a sense of belonging for students who have traditionally been excluded from STEM opportunities.
Toulouse added that ASSET’s pre-service to in-service teacher training and mentoring supports will be valuable to help Beyond100K reach its goal.
Builds on Last Month’s Major Grant Announcements
These new partnerships come on the heels of last month’s announcements of $355,000 in new funding grants to ASSET from the Pennsylvania Department of Education ($275,000) and the Appalachian Regional Commission ($50,000), coupled with another $30,000 from The Benedum Foundation and EQT Corporation.
Specifically, the new Pennsylvania state funding allows ASSET to strengthen its relationship with Carlow University and establish new partnerships with University of Pittsburgh-Johnstown and Westminster College. At each college or university’s school of education, the PALS program will be incorporated into teacher preparation coursework and virtual tutoring will be integrated into their field experiences. These preservice teachers also will receive real-time coaching from experienced educators during their tutoring sessions.
Currently, PALS has nearly 80 preservice educators from who have provided 699 no-cost tutoring sessions to 118 Allegheny County learners. The PDE funding will result in an additional 160 pre-service educators working one-on-one with K-12 students during some 1,500 tutoring sessions at ASSET’s out-of-school time (OST) program partners in Pittsburgh’s Northside, Lincoln-Larimer and Sheraden neighborhoods.
The Appalachian Regional Commission, Benedum and EQT funds enable ASSET to develop plans to expand PALS to additional communities in Allegheny County, as well as establish it in Greene, Indiana, Cambria and Lawrence Counties.
About ASSET Inc.
For more than 30 years, ASSET has been accelerating and amplifying educational excellence by modeling responsive learning environments to allow teachers to be the drivers of educational innovation. Originally conceived by industry to drive science literacy and science education reform, ASSET’s work has evolved to answer the ever-changing needs of educators. ASSET provides relevant, cross-disciplinary teacher professional development, coaching, and project-based learning that translates into student academic achievement. ASSET serves as a convener to connect and collaborate with diverse educational entities and is recognized as an innovator and change-agent by the U.S. Department of Education, the Appalachian Regional Commission, Beyond100K!, and other like-minded stakeholders to elevate the teaching profession. For more information visit, www.assetinc.org.