November 2, 2023

EDC Receives DoD Grant to Promote Literacy in Civics and STEM

EDC has been awarded a grant from the U.S. Department of Defense National Defense Education Program (NDEP) to build capacity to foster high school students’ civic and STEM literacy. The newly funded work, Synergizing Civics and STEM through Teacher Learning, will feature use of the innovative Supporting Readiness through Vital Civic Empowerment (SRVCE) curriculum, which EDC developed and tested with 18 schools in 15 states in a previous NDEP grant.

Over the next two years, EDC will partner with the Teaching Institute for Excellence in STEM (TIES) and Generation Citizen to help teachers spark students’ interest in STEM careers, while deepening youths’ understanding of the role of STEM skills in addressing civic issues.

“We are excited to be chosen by the Department of Defense to expand and sustain SRVCE,” said EDC principal investigator Jessica Juliuson. “STEM and civic literacy are both key to students’ career readiness and citizenship. We look forward to connecting these two domains to achieve greater benefits for students.”

EDC, TIES, and Generation Citizen will work with school districts in Louisiana, North Carolina, and Virginia that primarily serve populations of students who are under-represented in STEM careers and have a high percentage of military-connected youth. An important element will involve helping districts create structures to sustain support for teachers and learning for students after the project ends.

Key activities will include:

1. Providing a professional development program that will prepare pairs of civics and STEM teachers to teach the SRVCE curriculum
2. Training teacher leaders to deliver SRVCE professional development
3. Engaging regional STEM industry partners to provide insight into local STEM careers and industry-based challenges
4. Connecting teachers with their local STEM Ecosystem

The team will also develop materials and models for national dissemination and use:
  • A toolkit to guide districts in engaging with STEM Ecosystems
  • Industry-based challenges that involve students in blended STEM and civics learning
  • Professional learning materials, a train-the-trainer guide, and coaching protocols

View a video about SRVCE below.