Trinity Elementary School teachers Terri Sanchez Agravat and Johanna Vasquez recently helped author an article on the importance of family involvement in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) education, specifically in marginalized communities.
The article was published by the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, which empowers educators to achieve excellence in learning, teaching and leading so every child is healthy, safe, engaged, supported and challenged. The teachers described how marginalized communities historically are not represented in STEM education and careers due to lack of resources. That led them to create a pilot program known as Family Outreach and Research in Education and STEM (FLORES). FLORES works with families to support students ages 5-7 in and outside of the classroom by encouraging STEM learning opportunities every day.
“The FLORES program offered early exposure to STEM learning,” said Sanchez Agravat. “It strengthened our community and school partnership. We also provided two sections in Spanish, allowing for our families to participate in their native language.”
It was especially important for both teachers to engage families in children’s education during the pandemic. “This was such a wonderful experience for the families and teachers that participated,” Vasquez said. “We value STEM education, as well as bringing joy to our school community.”