AAPT/AIP Master Teacher Policy Fellowship
The American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT) and the American Institute of Physics (AIP) seek applicants for the “AAPT/AIP Master Teacher Policy Fellowship,” recently funded by the AIP Venture Partnership Fund. The purpose of this fellowship is to engage K-12 classroom teachers of physics and physical science (including elementary teachers) as agents of change in physics education. Funding will be provided for travel, meals, and accommodations (at double occupancy) necessary for a summer workshop in Washington, DC. Following the summer workshop, participants will be expected to carry out their strategic plans for policy engagement during the 2019-2020 academic year.
Description: This program will bring together a dozen Fellows with experience in high school physics and K-8 physical science teaching who are eager to develop strategic plans to positively impact policy as it relates to elementary and secondary physics education. The program aims to empower and support teacher-driven efforts to improve educational policy at the state and/or large district level as it pertains to the teaching and learning of physics. This 12-month program will bring together cohorts of K-12 teachers of physics during an 8-day workshop experience in Washington, DC.
During the workshop, participants will learn about the resources and policy supports that can be provided by the AAPT and AIP for district and/or state-level work. Using a “problem-based learning” approach, Fellows will use the workshop to explore solutions to their identified policy issue, learn about case studies in science policy from experienced science policy leaders, and receive constructive feedback from high-profile “critical friends” in local, state, and national science education policy.
During the academic year, Fellows will be supported to engage in policy in their local and/or state context. Physics Education Policy: Physics education policy includes—but is not limited to—legislative action. Policy can include district guidelines for professional practice, the state-level implementation of standards for learning, and norms for teacher professional development. Relevant policy issues at the state level might include topics such as the following: physics teacher certification requirements, the availability and quality of physics teacher preparation programs, recruitment and retention of physics teachers, the availability of funds for discipline-specific professional development for content growth and standards-alignment, and physics-related assessments.
Relevant policy issues at the district-wide level might include topics such as equitable access to physics and physical science across all schools or across all grade levels, and the adoption of curricular materials and instructional resources. Special mention should be reserved for the many policy issues that have arisen as a result of curricular and instructional alignment to the Framework for K-12 Science Education and the adoption or adaptation of the Next Generation Science Standards. The inclusion of both new content and skills presents a challenge to teachers who teach it, curriculum developers and professional development providers who support it, and to assessors who work to evaluate both teacher instruction and student learning. For those who have formally adopted the NGSS, the physical sciences have been placed on equal footing with the life and Earth and space sciences. Learn more about physics in the NGSS by reading Physics in 21st Century Science Standards. Individuals who apply to this fellowship should have a desire to impact science education policy in at least one of the domains above.