COMET • Vol. 6, No. 24 – 27 September 2005


(1) Single Subject Matter Program Reviewers Needed by CCTC

Source: California Commission on Teacher Credentialing (CCTC) – 22 September 2005

The Commission will host several meetings to train reviewers of single subject programs, which enable teacher candidates to meet the subject matter requirements for single subject credentials. Reviewers with K-12 or higher education teaching experience and an academic degree in the subject are needed to review programs in English, mathematics, science, social science, art, music, languages other than English, and physical education. Experience working with state standards is also important. The Commission will cover expenses for reviewers selected to attend both full days of the meeting. Interested parties should submit the nomination form below immediately as resources are limited.

Download the invitation form:

Download the nomination form:

(2) Governor Signs Bill Authorizing CSU Education Doctorate

Source: California State University Chancellor’s Office

On September 22, Governor Schwarzenegger signed legislation (SB 724) that will authorize the California State University to independently offer the Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) degree. This is the first authorization to independently award a doctorate since the system was formed almost half a century ago. The new degree will target K-12 and community college administrative leaders.

“This legislation marks perhaps the most significant change in the California State University’s role in the last four decades,” said CSU Chancellor Charles B. Reed. “We are extremely grateful to Senator Scott and to all of the supporters of this bill who understand the importance of creating access to high-quality programs that prepare leaders for California’s schools.”

Previously, under California’s Master Plan for Higher Education, the CSU could only offer bachelor and master’s degrees, except for a limited number of doctorates via programs offered jointly with private universities or in partnership with the University of California.

However, workforce demands for doctoral training for administrative leaders for California public elementary and secondary schools and community colleges has far outstripped the state’s ability to provide them. In addition, because the Doctor of Education degree is primarily offered in California by private universities, the costs are a barrier to many Californians.

The new educational leadership doctorate builds upon the CSU’s expertise and program strengths. The CSU historically had its origins in teacher colleges, and the preparation of teachers and education leaders has remained one of its core missions. The expansion of the responsibility for educational leadership training at the doctorate level will facilitate increased career opportunities and better preparation for thousands of educators who will be ready to meet the educational needs of the state.

UC will continue to offer its own doctoral degrees in education (both the Ph.D. and the Ed.D.), and both systems will continue to offer a wide variety of training and professional development programs for teachers and administrators.

The law is effective on January 1, 2006. The first students are expected to begin their studies for the Ed.D. at selected CSU campuses in fall 2007.


The California State University is the largest system of senior higher education in the country, with 23 campuses, approximately 400,000 students and 42,000 faculty and staff. Since the system was created in 1961, it has awarded about 2 million degrees, about 82,000 annually…See


(1) NSF’s Classroom Resources

Source: National Science Foundation

Classroom Resources is a diverse collection of lessons and web resources for classroom teachers, their students, and students’ families. Materials are arranged by subject area to help you quickly find resources in your interest area, and then use them to create lesson plans or at-home activities.

Most of these resources come from the National Science Digital Library (NSDL). NSDL is the National Science Foundation’s online library of resources for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics education. It was established by the National Science Foundation to capture improvements in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics education and organize them into one point of online access. Collaborating partner institutions such as universities, museums, professional organizations, government agencies, research laboratories and publishers create NSDL materials. NSDL’s network of content-rich collections, educational resources, and technology-based information is intended to meet the needs of students and teachers at all levels: K-12, Higher Education and Lifelong Learning. See

(2) Mathematics Education Program Based on “NUMB3RS”

Source: CBS

Texas Instruments (TI) is leading the “We All Use Math Every Day” mathematics education initiative based on the hit series “NUMB3RS” (CBS; 10:00-11:00 PM, ET/PT). In partnership with CBS and working in association with the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM), TI has created an educational outreach program promoting the many uses of mathematics. This program includes TI- and NCTM-developed mathematics education activities for teachers and students based on the TV show.

Lessons for students in grades 7-12 that are designed to accompany each episode of “NUMB3RS” are available at Teachers can view the classroom activities coordinated with each “NUMB3RS” episode on this website a week prior to the show. Teachers can also order a free Teaching Kit at

The mathematics used in each episode of “NUMB3RS” is based on acual FBI cases. Mathematics consultants work with “NUMB3RS” writers throughout production to ensure the accuracy of the mathematics that is used to help analyze and solve crimes by FBI agent Don Eppes (Rob Morrow) and his mathematical genius brother Charlie (David Krumholtz).

Parents are encouraged to watch the show along with their children to actively discuss how math is used in real life. Additional information on how parents can encourage their children in mathematics will be added to the above website in the coming months.

(3) NCTM Position Statements and Positions

Source: The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics

This year, the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) has produced three position papers, which “define a particular problem, issue, or need and describe its relevance to mathematics education. Each statement defines the Council’s position or answers a question central to the issue.”

This year’s position statements are on the following topics:

(a) Highly Qualified Teachers

(b) Computation, Calculators, and Common Sense

(c) Closing the Achievement Gap

(4) IBM Launches ”Transition to Teaching” Program

Source: IBM – 16 September 2005

Last Thursday, IBM announced that it will help address the critical shortage of math and science teachers by leveraging the brains and backgrounds of some of its most experienced employees, enabling them to become fully accredited teachers in their local communities upon electing to leave the company.

The IBM Transition to Teaching program will begin as a pilot with as many as 100 United States employees in various geographic areas participating across the country and, if successful, will expand significantly and engage other companies, too. Each employee will be able to participate in both online course work and more traditional courses, as well as student teach for up to three months in order to meet state certification requirements.

IBM will reimburse participants up to $15,000 for tuition and stipends while they student teach as well as provide online mentoring and other support services in conjunction with partner colleges, universities and school districts.

The IBM pilot will be operational in January in New York, North Carolina and other locations where IBM has a significant population. Employees will need management approval and to fulfill general requirements such as 10 years of service with IBM, a bachelor’s degree in math or science or a higher degree in a related field, and some experience teaching, tutoring or volunteering in a school or other children’s program.

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, jobs requiring science, engineering, and technical training will increase 51 percent through 2008. This increase could lead to 6 million job openings for scientists, engineers and technicians. In order to prepare today’s young people for these careers, more than 260,000 new math and science teachers are needed by the 2008-2009 school year. Simultaneously, 76 million baby boomers are approaching traditional retirement age, with many reporting they plan to continue working in fields where they can give back to their communities.

“Many of our experienced employees have math and science backgrounds and have made it clear that when they are ready to leave IBM, they aren’t ready to stop contributing,” said Stanley Litow, president of the IBM International Foundation and vice president of IBM Corporate Community Relations. “They want to continue working in positions that offer them the opportunity to give back to society in an extremely meaningful way. Transferring their skills from IBM to the classroom is a natural for many–especially in the areas of math and science.”

IBM’s Transition to Teaching Program is an extension of IBM’s work in the education field and in community service. Since 1994, IBM has been involved in school reform through its Reinventing Education program, the company’s flagship program with an investment of $75 million worldwide. More than 100,000 teachers have been trained in this program worldwide.

“New York schools are focused on preparing students for the innovation economy,” said State Education Commissioner Richard Mills. “New York needs more people with math and science skills to meet the growing job demand, but we need more teachers to make that happen. [This] announcement represents an important step by one of our biggest employers and leading companies, but we hope IBM is just the first company to step forward in this new initiative.”

IBM employees have a history of volunteering in the community. Almost 45,000 employees worldwide participate in On Demand Community, many in their local schools. This school year, 7,500 IBM employees will be online mentors for middle school students and more than 3,000 employees visited classrooms in the U.S. through National Engineers Week in 2005.

“The IBM Transition to Teaching Program is one of the most exciting and hopeful things I have seen come along to help us have more highly qualified math and science teachers,” said James B. Hunt, Jr., chairman of the James B. Hunt, Jr. Institute for Educational Leadership and Policy and former governor of North Carolina. “IBM employees are smart, highly motivated and thousands of them already volunteer and tutor in America’s public schools. Now, many of them will become terrific full-time teachers with the company’s strong support. I hope more companies and organizations will follow IBM’s great example.”