Merck's Non-Profit to Advance Science Education Joins President Obama's Educate to Innovate Campaign

Newark (N.J.) Public Schools and the Merck Institute for Science Education (MISE) Enter Partnership to Reform Science Education in State's Largest School District

WHITEHOUSE STATION, N.J.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Merck, a global healthcare leader, announced today that the Merck Institute for Science Education (MISE) is being recognized by President Obama as being a model science education initiative at an event being held today at the White House.

The President's "Educate to Innovate" campaign is a nationwide effort focused on excellence in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education. Today's White House event marks the kick off of "Change the Equation" (CTEq), a newly formed organization to mobilize corporate support for improved STEM education for all American students. Merck, a recent member of CTEq, will be represented at the White House by Richard T. Clark, chairman and chief executive officer of Merck, and Dr. Carlo Parravano, executive director of MISE.

"Merck has helped nurture scientific learning among young students for more than 18 years in New Jersey and Pennsylvania," Mr. Clark said. "We look forward to sharing our experience and demonstrated best practices to further the country's goal of advancing American students in STEM achievement over the next decade."

"Our success as a nation depends on strengthening America’s role as the world’s engine of discovery and innovation," said President Obama. "I applaud Merck and the MISE for lending their resources, expertise, and their enthusiasm to the task of strengthening America’s leadership in the 21st century by improving education in science, technology, engineering and math."

Recognizing teachers as key to the learning process, MISE focuses on professional development programs that provide educators with research-based tools and strategies so they can improve all students' performance in science. A non-profit organization founded by Merck in 1993, MISE supports the capacity-building of partner school districts and the creation and sustainability of innovative classroom practices in science education.

As the 2010 school year begins, Newark Public Schools (NPS) joins MISE’s partnership with school districts dedicated to science education reform from kindergarten through grade 12. The goals of the partnership are to raise the participation and performance of NPS students in science, make science education a priority and build district capacity to sustain and continuously improve science teaching and learning.

“Partnering with MISE provides our district educators with a unique opportunity to adapt their current practices to future opportunities and challenges in an increasing global market,” said Dr. Clifford B. Janey, Superintendent of Newark Public Schools. “How we engage as adults sets a gold standard for what we can expect from our students. We are proud and poised to model this partnership with MISE.”

Strategic Five-Year Plan for MISE-Newark Partnership

Working together, MISE and NPS will develop a five-year strategic plan to establish benchmarks for progress. The partnership will work to align school district policies to support teaching and learning science, leverage resources to support improvements, develop and maintain a coherent science curriculum and provide professional development and on-site support for teachers of science. The expected outcome is that MISE will help to enhance the interest and aspirations among all NPS students for science learning.

Newark educators will participate in MISE’s three-year Academy for Leadership in Science Instruction that brings together teachers, principals and administrators to strengthen their science classroom instruction and deepen their leadership fundamentals. Newark teachers will engage in other professional development initiatives, such as MISE’s Peer Teacher Workshops, designed to increase content knowledge while preparing teachers to successfully engage in inquiry-based science instruction.

"MISE is expanding the impact of its work to form a partnership with the largest school district in New Jersey," Dr. Parravano said. "We are excited to work with Newark Public Schools and to work toward significant and sustained improvements in science teaching and learning on a large scale."

More than 6,000 educators have worked with MISE to improve science education since it’s founding in 1993. Newark joins six other school districts in the partnership: Elizabeth, Hillside, Linden, Rahway and Readington Township in New Jersey, and North Penn in Pennsylvania.

About MISE

With a $38 million commitment by Merck, the New Jersey-based global healthcare leader, MISE was founded in 1993 as a non-profit organization dedicated to improving science education from kindergarten through grade 12 and influencing education policy. MISE is widely viewed as a model for how corporations can support the nation’s science education objectives and make a lasting difference in education reform by committing to long-term partnerships. To learn more, visit www.MISE.org.

About The Newark Public Schools

The Newark Public Schools District is the largest and one of the oldest school systems in New Jersey. The district serves approximately 39,000 students in 75 schools ranging from pre-K to secondary school students; and employs approximately 6,500 staff within the schools and Central Office. To learn more about the Newark Public Schools, visit www.nps.k12.nj.us.

About Merck

Today’s Merck is a global healthcare leader working to help the world be well. Merck is known as MSD outside the United States and Canada. Through our prescription medicines, vaccines, biologic therapies, and consumer care and animal health products, we work with customers and operate in more than 140 countries to deliver innovative health solutions. We also demonstrate our commitment to increasing access to healthcare through far-reaching policies, programs and partnerships. For more information, visit www.merck.com.



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Ron Rogers, 908-423-6449

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