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First international teacher for US space programme from Maharashtra

January 31, 2012 08:53 IST
A middle school teacher from Maharashtra has been selected as the first international teacher for a prestigious space programme in the United States.

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Vandana Suryawanshi, an educator who with the Vidya Valley School who has been teaching biology, earth science and general science for 20 years, would join the 19 other new Teacher Liaisons who were selected for their active promotion of space and science education by the Space Foundation. This is for the first time that an international teacher has been selected for this prestigious fellowship of the Space Foundation, which is now 10 years old.

The new flight of Teacher Liaisons will serve as advocates for space-themed education across the curriculum and will use Space Foundation-provided training and resources to further integrate space principles into the classroom, a media release said. The highly regarded Space Foundation Teacher Liaison programme has more than 270 active participants, including the 2012 flight.

The teachers are selected by a panel comprising representatives from the space industry and military, it said. The 2012 Teacher Liaisons will be publicly recognised at the Space Foundation's 28th National Space Symposium, scheduled for April 16 to 19 in Colorado. In addition to the recognition activities, the 2012 Teacher Liaisons will participate in workshops and education programmes at the 28th National Space Symposium. Following the Symposium, Teacher Liaisons can take advantage of specialised training and instruction at Space Foundation and NASA workshops with optional graduate-level credit; exclusive science, technology, engineering and math professional development experiences with optional continuing education credit; and special space-oriented student programs created just for Teacher Liaisons, the press statement said.

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