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Background

"In a world where advanced knowledge is widespread and low-cost labor is readily available, U.S. advantages in the marketplace and in science and technology have begun to erode. A comprehensive and coordinated federal effort is urgently needed to bolster U.S. competitiveness and pre-eminence in these areas. This congressionally requested report by a pre-eminent committee makes four recommendations along with 20 implementation actions that federal policy-makers should take to create high-quality jobs and focus new science and technology efforts on meeting the nation's needs, especially in the area of clean, affordable energy:

Rising Above The Gathering Storm:
Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future (2006)
The National Academies
Committee on Science, Engineering, and Public Policy
Rising Above The Gathering Storm.pdf
In 1983 this report shocked the nation with its imperative for American educational reform. Despite pouring a massive amount of money at the problem, the conditions that were reported in this study continue to worsen and instead of getting better we have continued to lose our competitive edge in the world economy. ("Rising Above The Gathering Storm")

* Has HR-1 "No Child Left Behind" had the opposite effect than the goals for which it was designed?
* Absent the rhetoric, are the trends positive, negative or non-existant?
* Do new technologies represent the solution to the complicated and inter-woven problems?
* Is it realistic to expect the system to alter itself?
* How do our partners in NAFTA see these problems?
* How does the crisis in immigration effect the problems in education?
* Why are young people rejecting careers in science, mathematics and technology?
* What role does higher education play?

What is known is not encouraging! This year for the first time we have fallen to second place as a technology producing country. This erosion of prominence parallels the negative trends in public education. This problem has been unfolding over three decades.

Historically, we have relied on immigration to solve the shortfall of scientists and engineers needed to sustain a technology based economy. September 11, 2001 redefined how we would allow scientists to come to this country. In the wake, companies are exporting jobs to third world countries just to satisfy the basic requirements of operation.
National Academies Reccommendations

* Increase America's talent pool by vastly improving K-12 mathematics and science education;
* Sustain and strengthen the nation's commitment to long-term basic research;
* Develop, recruit, and retain top students, scientists, and engineers from both the U.S. and abroad
* Ensure that the United States is the premier place in the world for innovation.

Some actions will involve changing existing laws, while others will require financial support that would come from reallocating existing budgets or increasing them".

The Question Is, "How" ?