June 23, 2024

Schools: A new package for science education


The Ministry of Education is expanding its program to reduce scientific skepticism. A new package brings together offerings to educate about science and democracy—from species conservation workshops to mathematical experiments to philosophy for children.

It was so total Almost 500 initiatives have been compiled. “Science impacts our lives – from smartphones full of science to nutrition and medicines that heal us,” said the Education Minister. Martin Polachek (ÖVP) at a press conference on Friday in Schönbrunn – although the site was not chosen in vain. After all, the zoo is “the largest extracurricular place for learning biological and scientific subjects,” said director Stefan Hering Hagenbeck.

For all kinds of schools

Included offerings include workshops, tours of research facilities and science labs, excursions, educational materials, and digital formats such as science apps and podcasts. They are spread all over Austria and are suitable for all types of schools. On the website, teachers can choose by federal state, school type, and their individual focus and learn about individual initiatives, some via virtual tours.

According to Polachek, the goal of the program is to spark interest in science and research in schools. In addition, one wants to convey how science works – also against the background of the fact that very few people would attempt to propagate alternative facts. Last but not least, students must also be won over as future researchers.

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as part of TruSD (Trust in Science and Democracy) From the ministry, 300 researchers also travel to schools as ambassadors for science. Universities and research institutions should have incentives in their performance agreements to devote more time to the topic.