Education Technology

Justice-Centered STEM Education to Address Pressing Societal Challenges Using the Case of the COVID-19 Pandemic

Dec. 2, 2021


Photograph of Peter McLaren

Peter McLaren


National Science Consultant
Next Gen Education, LLC

Peter McLaren is the Director and Founder of Next Gen Education, LLC, and works as a consultant with states and districts in support of the implementation of the state science standards based on “Framework for K–12 Science Education” (NRC, 2012). In his previous work, McLaren served in a number of roles in the area of science education policy, including Director of the State and District Support for Science at Achieve, Inc., and Science and Technology Specialist at the Rhode Island Department of Education. He also served as President of the Council of State Science Supervisors (CSSS) from July 2010 until April 2013.

McLaren was a member of the national writing committee for the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). He has also served on a number of committees including the National Academy of Engineering’s “Guiding Implementation of K–12 Engineering Education” committee, and the National Academy of Science’s Committee for “Developing Assessments for the Next Generation Science Standards” (NRC, 2014), and was a contributor to the NRC publication “Seeing Students Learn Science” (NRC, 2017). An award-winning educator, McLaren was a teacher of science for 13 years at both the high school and middle school level. In 2001, he was recognized with the Milken Family Foundation National Educator Award and in 1995 as the Rhode Island Science Teacher of the Year by the MIT-sponsored Network of Educators of Science and Technology. He holds Bachelor of Science and Master of Arts degrees in science education from the University of Rhode Island. Back to event details

Photograph of Michael Heinz

Michael Heinz


Science Coordinator
New Jersey Department of Education

Michael Heinz serves as the Science Coordinator for the New Jersey Department of Education. His responsibilities focus on academic standards, curriculum, instruction and professional learning. Within this work, his focus is on creating equitable systems of science education that ensure that every student has access to engaging relevant curriculum. He is currently a member of the state steering committee for the development of freely available high-quality science instructional materials being developed by OpenSciEd . Heinz is also deeply involved in the Advancing Coherent and Equitable Systems of Science Education (ACESSE, or “access”) project which brings together partners from educational research and practice to promote equity and coherence in science education. Prior to service with the NJDOE, Heinz was a middle and high school science teacher. Back to event details

Photograph of Joleigh Honey

Joleigh Honey


Mathematics Equity Specialist
Utah State Board of Education

Joleigh Honey serves as the Mathematics Equity Specialist at the Utah State Board of Education, is the current President of the Association of State Supervisors of Mathematics (ASSM), and has been a mathematics educator for 27 years. Her roles have included being a classroom teacher, academic coach, K–12 mathematics and building administrator, and STEM Coordinator. Honey has worked closely with colleagues over the years to promote equity and increase inclusive practices. She has presented nationally on these topics, including mathematics conferences such as ASSM, NCTM, NCSM, and special education conferences (NASDE, NCSI). Back to event details

Photograph of Todd Campbell, Ph.D.

Todd Campbell, Ph.D.


Department Head, Curriculum and Instruction
Professor of Science Education
Neag School of Education

Todd Campbell, Ph.D., is the Department Head of Curriculum and Instruction and a Professor of Science Education in the Neag School of Education. His research focuses on cultivating imaginative and equitable representations of STEM activity. This is accomplished in formal science learning environments through partnering with pre-service and in-service science teachers and leaders to collaboratively focus on supporting student use of modeling as an anchoring epistemic practice to reason about events that happen in the natural world. Back to event details

Photograph of Okhee Lee, Ph.D.

Okhee Lee, Ph.D.


Professor, Department of Teaching and Learning
Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development
New York University

Okhee Lee, Ph.D., is a professor in the Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development at New York University. Her research involves integrating science, language, and computational thinking with a focus on English learners. She was a member of the NGSS writing team and served as leader for the NGSS Diversity and Equity Team. She was also a member of the Steering Committee for the Understanding Language Initiative at Stanford University. Her latest work involves justice-centered STEM education to address pressing societal challenges using the case of the COVID-19 pandemic. Back to event details