Since 2011, the government of Egypt has promoted STEM education as a means to build its students into future leaders capable of solving contemporary problems, advancing innovation, and thinking critically. Currently, the 14 government-run STEM schools offer classes in biology, math, earth science, chemistry, and physics for 10th, 11th and 12th grade students. The Ministry of Education plans to open four additional schools in the upcoming academic year.
The STEM education system is centered on project-based learning, student-centered instruction, the engineering design process, capstone projects, and an integrated STEM curriculum based on Egypt’s Grand Challenges. Given Egyptian public schools’ long history of lecture-style and facts-based education, the STEM schools represent a completely new model for Egypt.
The objectives of the USAID | STEM Teacher Education and School Strengthening Activity (STESSA) are to: (a) build a strong relationship between STEM teacher education and STEM schools in order to work as a single STEM education system; (b) sustain a high quality STEM teacher education program; and (c) institutionalize the STEM education system.
World Education (WEI) is a subcontractor to 21st Century Partnership for STEM Education (21PSTEM) on the project. Since 2018, WEI has provided technical expertise in Monitoring & Evaluation and English language training for the STEM high schools and the 4-year undergraduate STEM teacher programs. Specifically, WEI began building the capacity of the Ministry of Education’s STEM unit, the National Center For Examination & Educational Evaluation (NCEEE) and the national Education Management Information Systems (EMIS) in foundational M&E required for their positions. Regarding the English language component, WEI conducted an audit and needs analysis of an online English language tool for STEM high school students and also designed a 3-month academic English professional development training for STEM high school teachers.
In 2021/2022, WEI will design a 1-year professional development course for STEM high school teachers focused on oral English language development. WEI will also provide coaching in M&E to 4-year undergraduate STEM programs’ Quality Assurance units and help strengthen their data analysis skills.