CHAPEL HILL, NC – Eleven middle school and high school educators from North Carolina will travel to Singapore July 15-24 to learn about the best practices of teaching mathematics and science from their counterparts in one of the world’s most-acclaimed education systems.

The trip is sponsored by the Burroughs Wellcome Fund (BWF) Scholars Program, in partnership with the   University of North Carolina system and four UNC campuses—North Carolina Central University, North Carolina State University, UNC Asheville, and UNC-Chapel Hill. The program’s goal is to better prepare new mathematics and science teachers for North Carolina’s public school classrooms. Go Global NC and Education NC will lead the trip.

This is the second cohort of BWF Scholars to travel to Singapore, following an earlier delegation in 2012. This marks the fifth trip to Singapore that Go Global NC has organized for North Carolina teachers.

Though a relatively young nation, having established its independence in 1965, Singapore has emerged as an innovator in education, particularly in mathematics and the sciences.

Over the past 50 years, its students have consistently ranked at or near the top in international comparisons of math, science and literacy proficiency. Last year, Singapore was rated best in the world by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), based on an analysis of test scores from 76 countries.

During their time in Singapore, North Carolina teachers will:

·       Explore Singapore’s approach to teaching math and science in a K-12 setting;

·       Gain insight into in-service professional development and pre-service teacher preparation;

·       Learn how the country’s future educational leaders are identified and prepared;

·       Gain a better understanding of Singapore’s approach to supporting early career teachers and school leaders; and

·       Collaborate with each other to find ways to implement lessons learned from Singapore, including global perspectives and use of technology in the classroom.

Participating teachers will reconvene in September to synthesize ideas and develop new classroom curricula and lesson plans that incorporate what they learned in Singapore.

The 2016 delegation includes classroom teachers from Buncombe, Burke, Durham, Orange, Person, Stokes and Wake counties. They are: Megan Alvord, physics (Broughton High School, Wake County); Michael Baker, math (Holly Springs High School, Wake County); Shane Castevens, math (Stokes Early College High School, Stokes County); Andromeda Crowell, biology, chemistry, anatomy and physiology (Orange High School, Orange County); Stephanie Robinett, science (Roxboro Community School, Person County); Emily Felker, biology and astronomy (Holly Springs High School, Wake County); Stefanie Joyner, biology (Hillside High School, Durham County); Brittany Krasutsky, science (Charles D. Owens Middle School, Buncombe County); Dustin Nichols, math (East Burke High School, Burke County); Gabrielle Rice, science (Southeast Raleigh Magnet High School, Wake County); and Kayleigh Willis, math (Broughton High School, Wake County).

The group will be documenting their trip via social media using the hashtag #SingBWF. Posts will be available on Twitter at @UNC_System; on Facebook at www.facebook.com/uncsystem; and on Instagram at @EducationNC and @goglobalnc.

“This international study experience will help enrich these teachers’ instructional approach to teaching mathematics and science, as well as expand their global awareness and cultural competence,” said Alisa Chapman, UNC vice president for academic and university programs. “We are fortunate to have sponsorship from the BWF for this innovative teacher preparation program offering a ‘fast track’ to teacher certification for science and mathematics majors aimed at preparing these individuals for careers in teaching.”

Chapman will lead the delegation along with Rick Van Sant, executive director of Go Global NC.

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UNC CONTACT: Alisa Chapman, UNC Vice President for Academic and University Programs, 919-360-0819 or chapman@northcarolina.edu.

About the Burroughs Wellcome Fund

The Burroughs Wellcome Fund is a private independent foundation that supports biomedical research and science education.  The Fund is located in Research Triangle Park, N.C.

About Go Global NC

Go Global NC connects North Carolina to the world and the world to North Carolina. Its global education and training programs empower North Carolina leaders with the skills, understanding, connections, and knowledge to succeed in a global community. Go Global NC (formerly the Center for International Understanding) is part of the 17-campus University of North Carolina system. Learn more: www.goglobalnc.org

About EducationNC

EducationNC (EdNC) seeks to expand educational opportunities for all children in North Carolina, increase their academic attainment, and improve the performance of the state’s public schools. EdNC provides the state with data, research, news, information, and analysis about the major trends, issues, and challenges facing K-12 education.

About the University of North Carolina

The oldest public university in the nation, the University of North Carolina enrolls nearly 225,000 students and encompasses all 16 of North Carolina’s public institutions that grant baccalaureate degrees, as well as the NC School of Science and Mathematics, the nation’s first public residential high school for academically gifted students. UNC campuses support a broad array of distinguished liberal-arts programs, two medical schools and one teaching hospital, two law schools, a veterinary school, a school of pharmacy, 11 nursing programs, 15 schools of education, five schools of engineering and a renowned arts conservatory. The UNC Center for Public Television, with its 11-station statewide broadcast network, is also under the University umbrella.

Tuesday, July 12, 2016