March 10, 2006
Assembly Republicans propose 'New Edison Project' to promote math, science education
Assembly Republicans announced a variety of proposals, including a celebrity advertising campaign and statewide science fair, to stimulate students' interest in areas that promote innovation.
The New Edison Project builds on existing programs, and proposals included in Governor Pataki's budget, to strengthen New York's position as "the leading engine for innovation in the world," Assembly Republican Leader James Tedisco said.
"These proposals represent a series of creative ideas that would address the need to inspire the next generation of scientists and engineers that New York State will need to build and sustain an innovation-based economy," said Daniel B. Walsh, President/CEO of The Business Council. "We applaud this effort and hope these ideas are part of a broad, bipartisan effort to invest in a high-tech economy of the future."
The New Edison Project would provide $6 million to create six new high schools, or programs within existing schools, with enriched math, science and engineering curricula. Other proposals include:
- Expansion of the "Project Lead the Way" program, now in 200 high schools, into an additional 100 schools. The project is a four-year sequence of engineering-related courses often combined with advanced math and science programs.
- A 50 percent business-tax credit for gifts up to $50,000 that help schools participate in Project Lead the Way.
- A New York State Science Fair, with a $500,000 award to the high school of the winning team, smaller prizes for other schools, and special college-tuition assistance for students on the winning teams.
- A $3 million celebrity advertising campaign that would persuade students, among other things, "it's 'cool' to be an engineer."
- Support for Governor Pataki's proposals that promote math and science education. Those initiatives include 500 new scholarships annually for students who commit to teaching math or science in New York public schools.