Two Fayette teachers selected for NASA’s airborne astronomy program


Two Fayette County teachers, Heidi Anderson of Locust Trace AgriScience Center and Ashley Rosen of the STEAM Academy, are among 28 teachers chosen for the 2019 NASA Airborne Astronomy Ambassadors (AAA) program, a professional development for high school science teachers.

The program, which is managed by the SETI Institute, is designed to measurably enhance student STEM achievement and engagement in selected school districts through professional development. Participants receive training in astrophysics and planetary science, content and pedagogy. Their training includes a week-long immersion experience at NASA’s Armstrong Flight Research Center Hangar 703 in Palmdale, Calif., with participation in research flights onboard NASA’s Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA).

AAA culminates in classroom delivery of a SOFIA science-oriented curriculum module. Impact on student STEM learning and engagement will be measured by WestEd education evaluators.

Anderson, who has been with Fayette County schools for 18 years, teaches physics, chemistry and biology classes at Locust Trace.

Rosen is in her fourth year at STEAM, where she teaches Introductory Physics with Earth and Space Science and serves as the school technology coordinator. She has been with Fayette County schools for 10 years.