Is STEM Academy Designation Synonymous with Higher Student Achievement?
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STEM education has received greater attention with increasing need of technology and engineering knowledge; therefore to improve young adults' knowledge in STEM, schools have been designated as STEM academies all over the world, especially in the US. The authors examined and compared Texas STEM (T-STEM) academies and non T-STEM schools' achievement longitudinally-2009 through 2011 to determine whether STEM schools fulfill their promises. Propensity score matching and HLM was used to determine the T-STEM and non T-STEM schools with similar backgrounds and analyze the longitudinal mathematics and science achievement of both types of schools, respectively. The results showed that from year to year for both school types, there was a statistically significant difference between students' mathematics and science scores; however, there was not a statistically significant difference between T-STEM academies' and their counterparts' academic achievement over time.