A bill (H.R. 4271) aimed at improving science and math education in public schools was approved, 36-0, by the House Science Committee on July 25. The bill, which pertains to the involvement of the National Science Foundation (NSF) in public school curricula, would authorize $80 million each year for FY2001-FY2003. The bill would create a teacher mentoring program, encourage the use of updated software in schools, establish an NSF working group on math and science education, and institute a grant program to be overseen by the NSF for schools and school districts to improve their math and science programs.
During its consideration, the committee approved several amendments to H.R. 4271, including one by Rep. Lynn Woolsey (D-CA), which would provide grants to educational agencies and institutions of higher education to develop curricula encouraging girls in grades 4-12 to select careers in math and science. Another amendment, offered by Rep. Connie Morella (R-MD), would create a pilot project to distribute grants to community colleges for the purpose of encouraging women, minorities, and persons with disabilities to study math, science, and engineering.