Press Release

NASA Selects New Explorer Schools

By SpaceRef Editor
May 12, 2004
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NASA has selected 50 new Explorer Schools, representing
34 states. The Explorer Schools Program is a major NASA
education effort to inspire the next generation of explorers
that may one day venture to the moon, Mars and beyond.

The education initiative was launched on June 30, 2003. The
program sends science and mathematics teachers “back to
school” at NASA centers during the summer to acquire new
resources and technology tools. The program uses NASA’s
unique content, experts and resources to make learning
science, mathematics and technology more appealing to

NASA Administrator Sean O’Keefe, Associate Administrator for
Education Dr. Adena Loston, astronauts, students and
teachers participated in today’s announcement.

“Students in classrooms today are the space explorers of
tomorrow. Their future role is vital to keeping our nation’s
technological and space exploration goals a reality,” said
Administrator O’Keefe. “We commit ourselves to working
closely with our nation’s schools to foster learning
environments that will inspire young people to understand
and protect our home planet, explore the universe and search
for life.”

The announcement completed a week of activities that
included workshops and tours of NASA’s Kennedy Space Center
for students and educators attending the 2004 Leadership
Institute/2003 NASA Explorer Schools Student Symposium in
Cocoa Beach, Fla.

The Explorer Schools Program is sponsored by NASA’s
Education Enterprise in collaboration with the National
Science Teachers Association. The program establishes a
three-year partnership between NASA and the 50 Explorer
Schools teams each spring. The teams of teachers and
education administrators represent many diverse communities.

During the commitment period, NASA education specialists and
scientists provide investigation opportunities and
professional development for the teams to spark innovative
science and mathematics instruction directed specifically at
students in grades four through nine.

“NASA’s mission is to inspire the next generation of
explorers by helping to make learning science and
mathematics more fun,” Loston said. “The NASA Explorer
Schools Program provides a promising avenue to positively
and uniquely impact science and math instruction in our
nation’s classrooms.”

Eighty percent of the 2004 Explorer Schools are located in
high poverty areas, and 74 percent represent predominantly
minority communities. Sixty percent of the competitively
selected school teams are represented in both high poverty
and high minority populations.

For a list of the Explorer Schools on the Internet, visit:

For information about NASA Education programs on the
Internet, visit:

For information about NASA and agency programs on the
Internet, visit:

SpaceRef staff editor.