STEM Learning Networks
State-based STEM networks connect the best STEM schools, educators and teachers to each other, so they can share best practices and maximize their nationwide impact. Battelle manages two state STEM networks, the Ohio STEM Learning Network (OSLN) and the Tennessee STEM Innovation Network (TSIN), as well as the country’s only multi-state STEM network, STEMx. Thanks in part to support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundatio, Battelle continues to provide guidance and funding to grow network infrastructures across the country, including established networks in California and New York and emerging networks in Colorado and Kentucky.
Case Study: The Tennessee STEM Innovation Network (TSIN)
Based on our experience developing and managing the Ohio STEM Learning Network, in 2011 the Tennessee Department of Education asked Battelle to launch the Tennessee STEM Innovation Network and facilitate new programs to infuse STEM learning throughout the state.
The TSIN is a system designed to leverage local and regional partnerships to achieve the overall goal of advancing STEM education. Regional Hub partnerships range from 30 to 70 business and education entities. Battelle provides a small and agile staffing infrastructure to support the work throughout the regions of the state. Work is mostly performed at the local level. Battelle provides technical assistant to help shape agreements, contracts and partnerships.
In its first two years of operation, the TSIN has grown to six regional hubs and nine STEM platform schools, which enroll 3,777 students. Platform schools are non-selective STEM schools that serve as demonstration sites for innovative STEM practices in teaching and learning, such as instruction models and project-based learning. One additional school is scheduled to open in fall 2013.