Appalachian Mathematics and Science Partnership (AMSP)

In 2006, the Appalachian Mathematics and Science Partnership (AMSP) requested supplemental funding from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to expand the partnership by adding Marshall University in Huntington, West Virginia, and five West Virginia school districts (Braxton, Cabell, Mason, Mingo, and Wayne Counties) as AMSP partners.

Under the supplement, AMSP proposed to expand its partnership to implement a narrowly focused set of project activities among West Virginia partners. “The central focus of the West Virginia AMSP will be the development and implementation of local PEP (Partnership Enhancement Plan) projects agreements with the five collaborating school systems as the core activity within which activities related to School Improvement/Program Enhancement, In-Service Teacher Enhancement, and Research/Evaluation will take place. Pre-Service Teacher Enhancement will occur through this core activity to a lesser degree than the other areas.”

 

In each of the partner districts an outreach professor from the College of Science provides content professional development and instructional support.  This collaboration provides a stronger relationship between each district and Marshall University while enhancing the quality of instruction in the districts.  Involvement of pre-service teachers in the professional development in the districts enhances the pipeline of educators who will become the peers of the in-service teachers in the districts.

The core mechanism for school improvement occurs through development of PEP projects in the five partner districts. These collaborative agreements include partnerships between Marshall University and a single school, a group of schools within a district, a single district, or some combination of districts or schools across districts. These locally focused partnership agreements are designed to address locally identified mathematics and science education needs using research-based best practice models and strategies. Projects are participant driven, i.e., derived from and developed on the basis of needs and challenges identified by schools or districts, and support project activities which address the program benchmarks.

The PEP proposals are reviewed and evaluated using the existing AMSP PEP proposal review process. This planning process and the resultant projects is the springboard for the development of all other West Virginia AMSP lines of investment and initiatives.  Projects developed through the efforts of AMSP-MU staff and outreach professors have been adopted by many districts throughout West Virginia and other states.