Eight legislators and a handful of state education officials are headed to Singapore in about a week to see what that country does right in math and science education.
The trip will be the second delegation to Singapore in the ten years that the Public School Forum of North Carolina and UNC’s Center for International Understanding have been sending lawmakers and policy shapers to look at other country’s schools, Mark Johnson reports.
The last three trips: Ireland, China and, now, Singapore, have all focused on nations where education and economic development are closely aligned, said John Dornan, the forum’s president.
"Out of nine countries we’ve not seen anybody do what Singapore has done," Dornan said.
Students in Singapore consistently score among the best students in the world in math and science.
The lawmakers headed overseas are Reps. Marvin Lucas of Cumberland county; Tricia Cotham of Charlotte; Tim Moore of Cleveland County; Earline Parmon of Winston-Salem and Sens. Debbie Clary of Cleveland County; John Snow of Cherokee County; Bob Atwater of Chatham County and Ed Jones of Halifax County.
State school board Chairman Bill Harrison and Scott Rawls, president of the N.C. Community College System also are going.
The trip is being funded primarily by a grant from the Burroughs Wellcome Fund with additional money from the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation, GlaxoSmithKline and SAS. A Glaxo official is joining the trip.