Managing curriculum change Essay

Abstract

            Grants support national and regional strivings towards development and implementation of new training programs. Howard Hughes Medical Institute is actively involved into the development of various scientific grant programs that substantially improve the quality of precollege science education. The researcher is fully responsible not only for the research outcomes, but also for the assessment and correct allocation of grant funds and resources.

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Managing Curriculum Change

            Grants support national and regional strivings towards development and implementation of new training programs, as well as new scientific ideas and individual research projects. The quality of precollege and college science education is critical for the development of the effective collaboration between parents, communities, and educational facilities.

            Howard Hughes Medical Institute is actively involved into the development of various scientific grant programs that substantially improve the quality of precollege science education. “Through its Precollege Science Education Program, HHMI seeks to nurture children’s interest in and knowledge of science. HHMI supports innovative classroom, laboratory, and field activities for pre-K to 12th grade students” (HHMI, 2008). The Institute actively collaborates with regional schools and educational facilities (Montgomery County Public Schools, Loudoun (Virginia) Public Schools, and Audubon Naturalistic society). In my school district new approaches towards science education could satisfy the existing need for development, and substantially improve the overall quality of science education across all grades. Such grant programs would provide teachers with better knowledge about the aims, the instruments, and opportunities of the science education, and reinforce more active participation of parents and communities in science education.

            Accepting and using grant funds is connected with several significant pitfalls. These may include misallocation of costs, excessive cost transfers, incomplete support, or inadequate subrecipient monitoring (Kalil, 2003). Using grant funds is a responsible mission; it requires thorough analysis of all costs and detailed understanding of the grant’s and the project’s mission. It is essential that the researcher is able to align the goals of his idea with the goals of the grant project.

            Generally, grants offer unlimited opportunities for research in education and training domains. Simultaneously, the researcher is fully responsible not only for the research outcomes, but also for the assessment and correct allocation of grant funds and resources. That is why grants actually require that the recipient combines the two different roles: that of the researcher, and that of the accountant.

References

HHMI. (2008). Precollege science education program. Howard Hughes Medical Institute.

Retrieved July 29, 2008 from http://www.hhmi.org/grants/office/precollege/

Kalil, T. (2003). A broader vision for government research: too many federal agencies lack

the research funds they need to stimulate innovative solutions to national problems. Issues in Science and Technology, 19: 22-24.

Paper responses

Kristen’s paper

I fully agree with Kristen’s view on the role of fine arts play in improving students’ academic and social performance. However, I think that educational professionals often lack sufficient skills for the implementation of various grant programs. Moreover, I have personally witnessed and experienced the situations when parents were not able and were not willing to incorporate their children into fine arts programs. For some reason, we tend to think that fine arts are unimportant, and we should pay more attention to sciences or humanities. Kristen tries to refute this idea, and supports my ideas about granting: it is more than research; it is research combined with accounting. That is why granting is frequently connected with accounting issues.

Doris’s Paper

What does unlimited education for all mean? Does that mean that each and every learner must have unlimited access to learning opportunities, or that mean that the learners should be actively engages into all types of analytical and research procedures? The question remains open, and Doris tries to answer it. Doris’s description of educational grant is very specific, and I cannot but agree that involvement of K-5 elementary students into critical thinking and problem solving activities opens the gateways towards continuous successful learning across all grades. Certainly, analytical thinking forms the basis for understanding complicated and complex knowledge systems that K-12 education offers. Again, Doris is very correct underlining the need for the grant to follow the sponsor’s guidelines, procedures, and requirements. To receive the grant, the applicant must be able to clearly state the objectives of the research, and to follow the directions of various grant committees.

Jody’s paper

How many times did we try to outline the major reasons of school underachievement? Researchers are still trying to find the central and the most appropriate cause of underachievement among elementary school students. The time has come when grants are offered to improve students’ performance and to decrease the drop-out rates. $2.5 million is a sum that may substantially change the overall situation in the national and regional school environment; the question is whether these large sums can be reasonably allocated among all problematic school districts. Jody answers this question, stating that the grant is available to one school at a time and is sponsored once in 5 years. I think and agree with Jody’s position in that such grant structure may make it unattractive to potential grant recipients.

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