Statistics to support valuing STEM education in our schools.
– Modelling by PwC shows that shifting just 1 per cent of the workforce into STEM roles would add $57.4 billion to GDP (net present value over 20 years). (PwC, 2015)
– Year 12 participation in STEM subjects is declining. Over the twenty-year period from 1992 to 2012 there was a fall in participation of 11% for intermediate mathematics,10% for biology, 5% for chemistry and 7% for physics. (PwC, 2015)
– In 2012 in the highly innovative manufacturing nation of Singapore, 52% of university graduates were from a STEM-related course. In Australia the proportion was just 16%. (PwC, 2015)
– Engaging children in science before the ages of 11 to 14 is critical to generating long-term interest in the discipline. However, Australian primary school teachers are required to spend only 1.5-2.5 hours on science and technology in the 30 hour school week. (PwC, 2016)
– According to the Chief Scientist, less than 3% of total primary school teaching time is
devoted to science instruction. By contrast, in Western Europe the average is 9% of total teaching time. (PwC, 2016)
– Experts have speculated that a sizeable number of primary school teachers have no Year 12 qualification in mathematics or science. (PwC, 2016)