Collaborating to Advance Teaching and Learning of Science Educators and Students (CATALySES) supports science teachers in ongoing opportunities for personal enrichment and professional advancement in biomedical education, and empowers them as agents of change in classrooms and in rural and inner city Florida schools. This proposal aims to build on and extend projects and partnerships that connect University of Florida researchers in Emerging Pathogens, Clinical and Translational Science, and Education with schools throughout the State to increase interest in and access to the newest advances in research on emerging diseases and translational medicine, and to inspire, prepare and recruit students for science and health- related opportunities and careers.
Collaborating to Advance Teaching and Learning of Science Educators and Students (CATALySES) is proposed by the University of Florida (UF) researchers and Florida educators to create and/or expand mutually beneficial, sustainable communities of learners using SEPA- generated infrastructure, partnerships, and evaluation tools. CATALySES build on a novel model of scaffolded professional development, teacher-researcher partnerships, and outcomes of an ending NIH-SEPA project, Explorations in Biomedical Research: Bench to Bedside. Aligned with the goals of the National Science and Technology Council Committee on Science, Technology, Engineering and Math Education (CoSTEM), the overall objectives of CATALySES are to prepare new and update/renew experienced teachers, partner with teachers to inspire and prepare students for the continuum of paths to the science and health-related workforce, and to provide authentic STEM experiences and opportunities for motivated high school students significantly under-represented in STEM and Health careers. CATALySES proposes to build capacity and opportunities for teachers in collaborating rural and inner city schools who are well-prepared and excited to create and share interactive lessons and activities centered around Emerging Pathogens, an interdisciplinary topic of high importance to Florida’s health, social and economic well-being. It plans to develop teacher- leaders through biomedical research experiences; support in writing, testing and publishing innovative traditional and technology-enhanced curricula; links with pre-service teachers; and continued interactions with researchers networked with regional communities of learners and their students. Also new to this proposal, CATALySES will provide summer laboratory-based programs and research experiences for underserved high school students identified and encouraged by their teachers to attend. The UF partners are the Center for Precollegiate Education and Training (CPET), the Emerging Pathogens Institute (EPI), the Clinical and Translational Science Institute (CTSI), and the School of Teaching and Learning (STL), with collaborating researchers from across the Health Science Center (HSC). The high school science education partners are Florida’s three rural Education Consortia in the Panhandle Area (PAEC), Northeast Florida (NEFEC), and the Heartlands, along with Palm Beach and Miami-Dade schools serving high numbers of students underrepresented in the science and health fields.