Virginia Association of Science Teachers


  • 09/14/2018 3:21 PM | VAST Webmaster (Administrator)

    Should Race Be Taught in High School Biology? 

    BY Michael Schulson

    Most current American biology textbooks and curricula don’t discuss race at all — nor do they grapple with the biology of sexual orientation or gender, for that matter. To some, these omissions seem appropriate. But to a growing number of academics, they represent glaring intellectual lacunae — a sort of sanitized approach to biology that ignores the political and cultural veins that have historically run through it. At stake is not just the question of how to teach human biology, but about what science classes are for, and how much teachers should talk about the social dimensions of scientific ideas. Read on » 


  • 09/14/2018 2:53 PM | VAST Webmaster (Administrator)

    The Governor’s School of Southside Virginia 
    Intent to Employ Notice
    2018-2019 School Term

    Position: Biology/Research Instructor

    Primary Location: Southside Virginia Community College – Christanna Campus, Alberta, VA
    Candidate also travels to John H. Daniel Campus, Keysville, VA

    Preferred Qualifications: 
    Must hold a current Virginia Teaching License
    Master’s Degree in Biology with thesis or Master’s Degree in another area with 18 additional graduate hours in Biology coursework
    Minimum 3 years teaching experience
    Gifted endorsement/experience teaching gifted students preferred
    Experience with Dual Enrollment Students
    Interest/knowledge in interdisciplinary curriculum

    Essential Job Functions: 
    • Demonstrate a thorough and accurate knowledge in the teaching discipline.
    • Plans and delivers appropriate curriculum content to students.
    • Assess student learning regularly and adapt instruction accordingly to maximize student learning.
    • Collaborate with other instructors in planning and delivering instruction to students.
    • Communicate effectively with colleagues, students and parents.
    • Foster a positive and safe learning environment.
    • Collaborate with faculty members in planning symposiums, joint site events, enrichment activities, field trips, outreach events, and other functions.
    • Complete other duties as assigned by the director.

    Salary: Commensurate with experience

    Deadline: Until filled

    To Apply: Mail or fax letter of interest, resume, copy of college transcripts and complete Commonwealth of Virginia application for employment to:

    The Governor’s School of Southside Virginia
    200 Daniel Road
    Keysville, VA 23947
    Fax: 434.736.2082

    Equal Employment Opportunity:
    The Governor’s School of Southside Virginia is an equal employment opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, creed, sex, national origin, age, disability, veteran status or sexual orientation. The Governor’s School of Southside Virginia reserves the right to hire the best available candidate.

  • 09/03/2018 12:40 PM | VAST Webmaster (Administrator)

    National Geographic’s upcoming documentary SCIENCE FAIR, will be shown in Washington DC from September 28 to October 5, 2018. SCIENCE FAIR follows nine high school students from around the globe as they navigate rivalries, setbacks and, of course, hormones, on their journey to compete at The International Science and Engineering Fair. Watch the trailer and learn more about SCIENCE FAIR hereTo potentially receive tickets, fill out this Google form.

  • 07/23/2018 9:22 PM | VAST Webmaster (Administrator)



    The Center for Excellence in Education (CEE), an internationally renowned education non-profit established in 1983 and located in the Tysons Corner area, seeks a full-time Manager for its USA Biology Olympiad (USABO) program to begin employment September 1.  The USABO enriches the life science education of nearly 10,000 talented students annually.   

    Manager is responsible for overseeing the coordination and administration of all aspects of the USABO program including planning, organizing, staffing, leading, budgetary accountability, and implementing program activities.  Tasks include outreach and dissemination; screening program applicants; monitoring all program databases; overseeing the completion of school, district, and state vendor agreements; managing mailings, document development, and purchasing; soliciting questions and developing exams; developing and directing 2-week training program off and on site with host institution and staff; identifying instructors for training program based on needed expertise; contracts development for instructors.

    Competitive compensation package commensurate with experience offered.  Information about CEE and the USABO may be found at

    Professional Experience/Qualifications:

    • Successful candidate will have a minimum of 5 years experience in STEM education (high school and/or university level)

    Master’s or PhD degree biological sciences preferred

    Program experience preferred

    Excellent communication and interpersonal skills

    Excellent analytical and organization skills

    Strong attention to detail and ability to work independently

    Applicant must be able to travel during the summer for two two-week period.

    Flexible full-time work schedule

    Application requirements due by August 15:

    Cover letter

    Resume/curriculum vitae

    • Email resume to

  • 07/09/2018 8:15 AM | VAST Webmaster (Administrator)
  • 06/04/2018 7:27 PM | VAST Webmaster (Administrator)


            “STEAM 5.0 – Retooled as TEAMS
     Presented by the Virginia Association of Science Teachers, Region IV
                    Thursday, July 12th, 2017 – 8:30 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
        Manassas Park Middle School
    (8202 Euclid Avenue, Manassas Park 20111)

    Speakers, Panels, and Presentations for All PK-12 Educators!

    Keynote Speaker: Dr. Ashley Bear, Program Officer -- 5.7.2018: Release of report, “The Integration of the Humanities and Arts with Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine in Higher Education: Branches from the Same Tree,” from the Committee on Integrating Higher Education in the Arts, Humanities, Sciences, Engineering, & Medicine Board on Higher Education & Workforce, Policy & Global Affairs; David Skorton & Ashley Bear, Editors.  NSTA’s 5.21 Express headline, “New Report Supports the Case for Education that Integrates STEMM Fields with Arts & Humanities.”  USA Today 5.16 article by David Skorton and Jane Chu, “STEM is essential for our nation’s future.  But it’s not the only discipline that matters.”  Dr. Bear is passionate about science outreach to the public and promoting diversity and inclusion in STEM.

    Breakout Session Topics and Panels: An Engineering Program + Liberal Arts Education = STEAM for Secondary Teachers; Integrating STEM & The Arts Instruction in Gifted Education Classes and by Elementary Specialists; Cross-Cutting Strategies for Math; STEAM Integration Resources workshops for both Elementary and Secondary Teachers from National Geographic/Cengage Program; The Arts’ Role in STEM; 21st Century Workforce Preparation in STEMM (+ Medicine) Panel; Student Artists Pursuing STEMM Careers Panel- “Why STEAM?”; & more!

    Working Lunch
    : Vertical Alignment and Cross-Curricular Strategies
    : Battlefields of Northern Virginia Council of Teachers of Mathematics;
                Manassas Park City Public Schools

    Fees:     $20/person         $10/current VAST/BNVCTM member
                   Team of 4 from one school - $70; w/ one VAST/BNVCTM member: $60

    First 20 Schools registered will receive a copy of:
                    STEAM+ Arts Integration: Insights & Practical Applications, Edited by Jacqueline Cofield, 2017. 
    The 12 contributors featured in this anthology are on the frontlines of STEAM+ Arts Integration Education and include engineers, educators, leaders/founders of STEM and STEAM education programs, teaching artists, and cultural programmers.  “This anthology will inspire you to, as Alicia Morgan writes in her contribution to the anthology, ‘color outside the lines of conventional thought’.”

    Registration fees include: refreshments, lunch, materials.   Educators: 6.5 Recertification points.

    Please send all of the following information by Saturday, July 7th.   Fees due at the workshop.

    Name                                                                                       School District                                           _____

    School ________________________________Subject Area/Grade Level __________________

    Current VAST Member?   _ BNVCTM? __   Email address (Summer) __ __       _______            _____

    Fee due from each participant- check payable to: “VAST” - cash/check on-site.  Teams- please submit registration form for each person.   Please contact Susan for Special rate for Students in Pre-Service or if using school invoice.                                       
    EMAIL TO: Susan Bardenhagen, VAST Region 4 Director-
                            REGULAR MAIL: Region IV Coordinator, P O Box 2974, Manassas, VA 20108

  • 05/12/2018 8:26 AM | VAST Webmaster (Administrator)

     Chesapeake Gold: Investigating the Past, Present, and Future of the Eastern Oyster (Hampton Roads area but open to all in VA) 
    July 16-20, 2018

    Open to all Virginia educators grades k-12.

    Imagine the Gold Rush in the “Wild West” during the mid-1800's, but in place of men mining gold, picture watermen on low-decked boats, harvesting mucky bivalves from towering reefs. These watermen deemed the Eastern oyster (Crassostrea virginica) “Chesapeake Gold.” Since the golden age of the Chesapeake's oysters, the watermen's culture hasn't changed much, but the oyster population may never be the same. During this course, the oyster will be the lens through which we investigate the historical, cultural, and technological changes of the Chesapeake region. Between Virginia's Historic Triangle and the Bay's islands, our investigation will include water quality data collection, oyster restoration efforts, encounters with watermen communities, and artistic connections.

    Length & Location: 5 days total; 2 days local, 3 days/2 nights at CBF's Fox Island Environmental Education Program
    Cost: $150
    Credit: Virginia and Washington, D.C. teachers are eligible for 45 continuing certification credit hours/points for successful course completion.

    It's Not Easy Building Green: Bringing STEAM into the Classroom Through Green Infrastructure (Hampton Roads, VA) 
    August 13-17, 2018

    Open to Hampton Roads educators.

    This five-day, local course for educators from Suffolk County and the greater Hampton Roads area will focus on how environmentally-sustainable design methods can be applied in the classroom. Educators will learn what it means to build “green,” and how to use science, technology, engineering, art, and math (STEAM) to connect students with the complex concepts of sustainable infrastructure. Course participants will investigate and experience real-life examples of how our modern society, locally and globally, can rethink the way that we design and build. We will also explore the complicated relationships between human development and the local environment. 
    Participants will use STEAM disciplines as a lens for engaging in hands-on, field-based investigations into local cultural and industrial history. This lens will guide participants' discovery of the impacts of technology, society, and industry on local ecology. By connecting ecological and cultural histories through STEAM, participants will learn interdisciplinary approaches to fostering creativity, innovation, and environmental literacy in their students – skills that will be essential to addressing current environmental challenges facing us both locally and globally.

    Length & Location: 5 local investigation days.
    Cost: $50 resource fee
    Credit: Virginia and Washington, D.C. teachers are eligible for 45 continuing certification credit hours/points for successful course completion

    Following the Falls: Tracing the Potomac River Around Fairfax County (Fairfax county-no overnights)
    July 16-20, 2018

    Open to Fairfax County educators grades k-12. 

    Participants in this course will explore the tributaries of the Potomac River in Fairfax County. Throughout the week they will have the opportunity to learn about the relationships between human activities and their impacts on wildlife and water quality. Teachers will leave this course equipped with new knowledge and activities to use back in their classrooms.

    Length & Location: 5 local investigation days within Fairfax County.
    Cost: $150
    Credit: Virginia teachers are eligible for 45 continuing certification credit hours/points for successful course completion.

    Piedmont and the Chesapeake: Connections Across the Watershed (Charlottesville & Albemarle County, VA) 
    July 23-27, 2018 

    Open to Charlottesville and Albemarle County educators.

    In this course, we will engage in hands-on, field-based investigations into issues of sustainability, biodiversity, and responsible management of natural resources in the context of the Chesapeake Bay Watershed. Deeply rooted in history, Albemarle County hosts a unique learning experience of both history and ecology and an expanse of natural landscape suited for learning. We will be traveling throughout the County for 5 days, investigating local watersheds of the James and Rivanna Rivers, examining the connection between human impacts and water quality as well as various educational sites to be used by teachers to enhance their classrooms.

    Length & Location: 5 local investigation days within the Charlottesville area. 
    Cost: $150.
    Credit: Virginia and Washington, D.C. teachers are eligible for 45 continuing certification credit hours/points for successful course completion.

  • 05/04/2018 4:49 PM | VAST Webmaster (Administrator)

    Summer 2018 4-Day Science Teachers Workshop:  “The Science of Nuclear Energy & Radiation”

    Middle and high school science teachers are invited to enjoy four days of lectures, labs, hands-on activities and tours in an immersive all-inclusive workshop that will provide educators with the opportunity to sharpen their knowledge and understanding of nuclear energy and radiation, enabling them to provide their students with factual and up-to-date information about nuclear science and technology. The workshop will be hosted by Virginia Commonwealth University College of Engineering in Richmond  from Tuesday July 17 to Saturday July 21, 2018, and will feature tours of the Surry Nuclear Power Station and VCU's Nuclear Medicine Facilities, as well  as numerous laboratories and hands-on activities full with ideas to implement in the classroom. The $75 registration fee includes 4 days of accommodations on the VCU campus, all meals, all tours, four Continuing Education Credits, a Geiger-Mueller meter to use in your classroom and all educational materials. Please visit  learn more and to register. The registration deadline is June 15, 2018 and there are limited seats in this workshop.

    Please contact Supy Phongikaroon, (804)  827-2278 if you have any questions

  • 05/04/2018 7:55 AM | VAST Webmaster (Administrator)

    Interested in teaching students about renewable energy? Enroll in the 2018 REcharge Academy – you can even win a scholarship!

    About the REcharge Academy

    The REcharge Academy is a week-long educator training workshop on renewable energy. The intensive training blends lectures from experts and tours of energy facilities with replicable hands-on K-12 lessons to give educators content, as well as context. Participants learn how to build solar-powered cars and boats and wind turbines, as well get a deep understanding of the science behind these projects so they can teach renewable energy concepts in their classrooms. Check out the 2017 REcharge Academy Report to see what educators learned.

    Dates:  July 23-27, 2018
    James Madison University in Harrisonburg, VA

    Win a Scholarship!

    The Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) is funding REcharge Academy scholarships for teachers in the 12 Wind For School States, including Virginia. Educators can apply for the scholarships through REcharge Labs here. Applications will be accepted through May 31, 2018.

    Have a question?  Send a note to

  • 04/24/2018 9:01 AM | VAST Webmaster (Administrator)

     Engaging Secondary Students in Authentic STEM Research

    Virginia Junior Academy of Science and Virginia Academy of Science

    Longwood University . . . May 23-24, 2018


    Overview:  On May 23, observe over 600 students, grades 7-8 and 9-12, present research papers on various natural and applied sciences, mathematics, engineering, and computer sciences. Learn how the VJAS Symposium develops important educational outcomes: workplace skills (the 5 Cs), career and civic responsibility, and understanding of Virginia’s SOL.  After the presentations, network with symposium participants and attend the George W. Jeffers Memorial Lecture, given by an outstanding Virginia scientist. On May 24, interact with VAS members through concurrent presentations, poster sessions, and discussions of research by their students. Learn how you can build relationships with Academy members to support student research.  You can attend on May 23 or May 23-24, 2018.

    General Schedule:  Detailed programs will be available in mid-May.

    May 23 – Virginia Junior Academy of Science

    May 24 – Virginia Academy of Science

    7:30 – 8:30 am

    Check-In (Willett Lobby)



    8:55 am – 12:00 pm

    Concurrent Student Sessions

    8 – 11:00 am

    Concurrent VAS Morning Sessions

    12:15 – 1:30 pm

    Buffet Luncheon & Networking (Dorrill Annex)

    11 – 11:30 am

    VJAS Award Paper Presentations at VAS Sections

    1:45 – 4 pm

    Concurrent Student Sessions

    12 – 2 pm

    VAS Poster Sessions & President’s Reception (heavy hors d’ oeuvre)

    4 – 4:30  pm

    Check-Out – Evaluation & Reimbursement (Day 1 only)

    2:30 – 3:30 pm

    Using Databases and CODAP to Conduct Research, Dr. Ginger Lewis, Longwood University

    5 – 6:30 pm

    Networking & VJAS Dinner

    (optional for commuters)

    4 – 4:30 pm

    Check-Out – Evaluation & Reimbursement (Day 1-2)

    7 – 8:30 pm

    VJAS General Meeting & George W. Jeffers Memorial Lecture

    (optional for commuters)

    3:45 – 5 pm

    5:30 – 7 pm

    Concurrent VAS Sessions (optional)

    Negus Memorial lecture (optional – open to public)


    Benefits Sponsors will provide free registration, event programs, and stated on-campus meals.  Participants will be reimbursed for mileage. Participants (who travel more than 100 miles per day round trip) will be reimbursed for hotel and dinner on May 22 – 23. Participants are responsible for making hotel reservation.  Conference can be used for certificate renewal credits.   

    How to Register:  You can register for May 23 or May 23-24, 2018. Go to, where more details are available. Statewide registration deadline is MAY 10, 2018.

    Questions:  For logistical questions, contact Barbara Scott ( at ITTIP. For program questions, contact Julia Cothron, VJAS Board Member (


    Virginia Academy of Science

    Virginia Junior Academy of Science

    Virginia Mathematics & Science Coalition

    Institute for Teaching through Technology and Innovative Practices (ITTIP) at Longwood University

Virginia Association of Science Teachers

209 W 15th St, Richmond VA 23224

(757) 897-3104

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