SOURCE: American Chemical Society

April 27, 2009 16:27 ET

Chemical Society Lauds Obama for Prioritizing Research, Science Education

WASHINGTON, DC--(Marketwire - April 27, 2009) - The President of the American Chemical Society today commended President Obama for "focusing national attention on scientific research, innovation, and math and science education" in his speech to the National Academies of Science.

Thomas H. Lane, Ph.D., said, "Our nation's future depends on these critical areas and the President has clearly backed up his promises with dramatic actions. The Administration's proposed 2010 budget and his efforts to include substantial funding for research and (STEM) education programs in the recovery package negotiated with Congress in February speak to these issues." The ACS has been a consistent and strong advocate for increased investments in scientific research and STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education at both the state and federal level.

President Obama promised today to make it a "national imperative" to dramatically improve student achievement in math and science and move U.S. students from the middle of the pack to the top of international benchmarks in the next decade by increasing support for these subjects.

Dr. Lane called the specifics of Obama's programs "extraordinary" and said ACS supports the President's proposed 10 year doubling track for key science agencies and his focus on science education at the federal and state level.

"ACS is also especially pleased the President proposed to find more ways to bring the expertise of practicing scientists and engineers into the classroom and to encourage states to use funds from the Recovery Act to improve laboratory facilities," he said.

In his speech, the President said it will be a challenge that will need "all hands on deck" from governors to parents to students to meet the effort of increasing support for science and technology and the quality of teaching. The President said he would involve governors to help in the "Race to the Top" where $5 billion is available in federal funds to help states improve the quality of their teaching in math and science.

President Obama also touched on energy in the speech and President Lane said his comments showed he recognized the need for a "generational leap" if America is to address the twin challenges of global warming and domestic energy security.

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