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How NMSI Is Expanding Learning Opportunities for Students and Teachers

When he goes back to school in person, William Scanlon is most looking forward to playing football and connecting with friends. Until then, he’s learning how to navigate remote learning. 

Scanlon recently finished his 10th-grade year at Eastlake High School in Chula Vista, California, a military-connected school served by the National Math and Science Initiative’s Military Families Mission. His father is Lt. Cmdr. Gary Scanlon, who is retired from the U.S. Navy.

“My son started attending the National Math and Science Initiative (NMSI) online review for AP biology in March,” Lt. Cmdr. Scanlon said. “We downloaded the student resources that provide guidance to understand what AP test questions are actually asking and how to answer such questions. Thanks to NMSI for providing this valuable support, especially during this challenging time to educate students.”

Thousands of teachers and students who were scheduled for in-person sessions this spring and summer will receive NMSI’s online-only trainings and study supports that are live and recorded. 

Lending a hand

During the NMSI online session, William needed additional support on the structure of different molecules and cellular functions. 

“The NMSI coach made anything I didn’t understand easier to understand,” he said. “Now I don’t have trouble with it anymore.” Online delivery is not new for NMSI, which is building on its experience to maintain and grow supports for students, teachers and school systems across the country. Focusing on its mission to serve students furthest from opportunity, NMSI is working with school partners to determine digital access needs, and will help them connect to hardware and broadband providers to remove barriers to academic achievement.

Support programs

From July 13-24, NMSI will provide online summer teacher and school leadership trainings

For the 2020-21 school year, NMSI is planning for blended (in-person and online) teacher trainings and will continue offering online student study supports. The in-person teacher sessions will move online if necessary, according to health guidelines. 

Along with scheduled teacher and student sessions during the summer, fall, and spring, as well as other support options from NMSI coaches and teacher cohorts, students and teachers now will have 24-7 access to NMSI supports via on-demand online modules. 

NMSI also offers free video lessons in math, science, and English, available via YouTube, that include work students can do to apply what they have learned. 

From gridiron to classroom

John Urschel, a former Baltimore Ravens offensive lineman and an MIT doctoral candidate, said he provided a video for the project because he wants to inspire more students to understand and appreciate math. 

Along with Urschel, NMSI’s video lessons come from teachers from across the country who each have a record of successfully preparing students for college. Those and hundreds of other teachers help NMSI deliver two of the nonprofit’s primary programs.  

The Laying the Foundation program helps teachers (grades 3-12) prepare students for rigorous high school courses. The flagship College Readiness Program supports AP teachers and students, and helps school systems provide more equitable access to advanced courses. 

NMSI also increases access to computer science education and helps prepare pre-service STEM teachers through a partnership with the UTeach Institute at The University of Texas at Austin. 

Founded in 2007, NMSI is a Dallas-based nonprofit that has reached more than 2 million students and 50,000 teachers across the country. Find out more at  

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