STEM Scale-Up Program Application Open for 2021-2022 Academic Year

12 high-quality programs bring hands-on STEM experiences to PreK-12 students across the state

January 22, 2021, 10:42 am | Kelly Bergman

youth participating in STEM Scale-up activities.AMES, Iowa – The Iowa Governor’s STEM Advisory Council is accepting applications for the STEM Scale-Up Program. The program provides STEM educational opportunities to approximately one-fifth of Iowa students each year, bringing some of the nation’s best STEM lessons, labs, kits, software and professional development to PreK-12 students and educators in-school, afterschool and in other educational settings, especially targeting those most in need. The application period for the STEM Scale-Up Program closes on March 5.

The program invites educators to provide hands-on STEM units covering topics such as robotics, coding, engineering design, agriculture, animal science and more. Students who participate in the STEM Scale-Up Program have a proven success rate of performing better on the Iowa Statewide Assessment of Student Progress as well as more positive attitudes about STEM study and careers, compared to students who did not receive STEM Scale-Up programming.  

“We cast a net across the country for top STEM programs and this year reeled in over 100 proposals – the most ever,” said Jeff Weld, executive director of the Governor’s STEM Advisory Council. “The council’s intent in designing this program eight years ago was to assure that every young Iowan finishes second to no one when it comes to STEM education and, with the 12 selected Scale-Up programs debuting on Jan. 11, we fulfill their intent.”

In making selections for the 2021 menu, trained expert reviewers weighed evidence of effect, diversity impact, cost benefit ratio, sustainability, Iowa Core alignment and more. The council’s executive committee considered additional factors including coverage across science, technology, engineering, math, and PreK through 12, as well as Iowa-specific priorities such as career awareness, computation, agriculture and more. The result is the following 12 programs selected for the 2021-2022 academic year to be offered to PreK-12 educators across Iowa:

  • Codejoy Computational Thinking in Action with Micro:bit.
  • DreamBox Learning Math.
  • Fierce and Fearless STEAM Teacher Training.
  • FIRST LEGO League Explore.
  • Ioponics.
  • Light and Shadow.
  • Nepris.
  • Project Lead the Way Medical Detectives.
  • SoapyCilantro.
  • Storytime STEM-packs.
  • Teaching Energy Transformations and Energy Sources.
  • VEX IQ.

The award recipients will be announced in April. Visit for more information on the 2021-2022 STEM Scale-Up Programs.  

About the Iowa Governor’s STEM Advisory Council

Established in July 2011 via Governor’s Executive Order, the Iowa Governor’s STEM Advisory Council is a public-private partnership of educators, companies and Iowa students and families addressing policies and programs designed to improve Iowa’s educational system focused on science, technology, engineering and mathematics, also known as STEM. The STEM Council works to engage and prepare students for a career ready workforce path, regain our state’s historic leadership position in education and provide a vital competitive economic advantage now, and for the future, to ensure that every Iowa student has access to world-class STEM education opportunities. The 58-member STEM Council is co-chaired by Governor Kim Reynolds. For more information, visit

Iowa State University hosts the North Central Iowa STEM hub.


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