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Don't shortchange liberal arts, says Evergreen biologist
The Olympia college provost agrees that science and math instruction needs to improve, but not at the expense of liberal arts.
The Associated Press
A well-rounded member of society requires more than just classes in math and science. That's according to the provost at The Evergreen State College, a biologist by training who is convening a group of academics this week to talk about gently pushing back against the current focus on science and math education.
Michael Zimmerman has had a growing unease with the increased focus on science, technology, engineering and math, or STEM, education. He agrees that science and math instruction needs to improve, but he doesn't think that improvement should come at the cost of shortchanging the liberal arts.
"I was concerned that there wasn't a voice of liberal arts in public education," he said.
Zimmerman sent a letter to every public and private college and university in the state, saying he didn't want to let the dialogue about the future of education get away from them.
"I expected 10 to 15 people to be interested," he said. Instead, every college and university responded and most sent representatives to a meeting Thursday on the Evergreen campus in Olympia to talk about what, if anything, they should do as a group to keep liberal arts from disappearing from Washington colleges and universities.