Friday, October 26, 2012

From the Laboratory to the Classroom (Lab2Class)

From the Laboratory to the Classroom (Lab2Class): Building Capacity for Math and Science Teaching in DC 

Project Overview:
Lab2Class seeks to improve the teaching of secondary school science and mathematics in Washington, DC. This goal will be achieved by recruiting STEM professionals with strong backgrounds in science and math to teach in the DC schools. The teaching fellows will be enrolled in a one-year intensive Masters in Teaching program after which they will teach in a DC school for at least four years. Lab2Class is a collaborative project between American University’s (AU) School of Education, Teaching, and Health, AU’s Departments of Mathematics/Statistics and Environmental Science, the Carnegie Institution of Washington, and the District of Columbia Public and Public Charter Schools. 

Lab2Class extends the successful work of the Math for America-DC project by expanding to science education. The program is funded through grants from the National Science Foundation and the Toyota USA Foundation.

Lab2Class Fellow Benefits and Commitments:
Lab2Class fellows receive a full tuition scholarship for a Masters of Arts in Teaching (MAT): Secondary Education in  Mathematics or Science (biology, chemistry or physics) at American University. During the 14-month MAT program, fellows also receive a living stipend of $23,500. Fellows commit to teaching in a DC public or public charter school for four years and receive a salary supplement of $10,000 per year for each of the four teaching years. The living stipends and salary supplements are awarded to help fellows transition from their current careers in math and science into the teaching profession. Fellows also receive mentoring support and monthly professional development seminars throughout the five-year Lab2Class program. 

The Lab2Class program will prepare math and science teachers who have deep content understanding to have the pedagogical skills to be effective teachers. The Lab2Class program is unique for its pedagogical innovations in teaching to traditionally under-prepared urban students. The coursework focuses on providing Fellows with a comprehensive understanding of how to teach their content at the middle and high school level that will lead to deep student understanding and high student achievement. In addition, ongoing mentoring and professional development programs will be provided to challenge and empower fellows to think innovatively about how they teach and effectively use appropriate assessments tools for instructional decision-making.

Broader Project Goals:
The overarching goal of Lab2Class is to increase the quality of math and science teachers in Washington, DC. In so doing, we will also develop a cadre of teaching professionals who will have the skills to take on leadership roles and engage in more systemic changes to improve STEM education in the District and beyond. An important outcome of this effort, by working with the ethnically, culturally, and socially diverse communities in DC public and public charter schools, will be an increase of underrepresented minority students in STEM fields. An aspirational goal of our effort is to serve as a model of strong teacher development in STEM education.  

Contact Us:
 Visit our website: or Contact Julie Sara Boyd, Director of Teacher Education at American University at or 202-885-3727.  Please let us know if you are interested in the program.