Welcome to the National Education Foundation STEM+ Academies


Mission Statement

The NEF-SUNY STEM VISION FOR AMERICA  is “To provide world-class STEM education to 1 Million K-12 Students in 2018, with 80% grant, and increase the number every year.”

— NEF Chairman Dr. Appu Kuttan

 About NEF

The Cyberlearning STEM+ Academies program is a private-public partnership among the National Education Foundation, the State University of New York at Potsdam, Pearson Digital, Skillsoft, and public, private, and charter schools throughout the United States. Scroll down, or explore the links above to learn more.


Interested in becoming a participating school? Learn how by visiting the  Join Us page.

Pinned News Stories

Martins Ferry Ohio School District wins NEF Academy of the Year


On May 19th 2017 the Martins Ferry School District was awarded the National Education Foundation’s Academy of the Year award. The District showed not only significant gains in their core subject areas but also demonstrated exceptional STEM skill abilities. The event included performances from the marching band, as well as a dance performance and fitness contest which was won by 75 year old NEF founder and CEO Dr. Appu Kuttan. In 2015 Martins Ferry enrolled in the NEF STEM+ Academy and were given a few simple STEM learning tools to complement their core subject learning. This included the Sphero robot. Two years later the School’s tech club were building their own robots and designing and 3D printing parts. Students also won all three of the MinecraftEDU contests while demonstrating Digital Literacy skills. Here at the NEF we can not be more thrilled of their accomplishments and are looking forward to continue to work with Martins Ferry and their amazing students and staff. We’d also like to recognize Warren County Schools in PA, Steubenville School District in Ohio, Lehighton District also in PA, and Canton School District in NY for earning merit awards for demonstrating respectable student achievement in Math, Reading, and STEM based projects. Thank you all for an excellent school year, we can’t wait to get started on the next!





SuccessMaker Level vs NYS Testing – 2016 Correlations

Learn more on our Evidence of Effectiveness page.



Robot Rescue: STEM Workshop



NAPLES, NY – SUNY Potsdam Professor Dr. Anthony Betrus led a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) educational workshop the morning of Tuesday, April 12, 2016, for a group of fifth graders at Naples Elementary School. The students, guided by Dr. Betrus, worked together to program a robot to reach a second robot by navigating through an obstacle course they built in their classroom. The robots are part of a STEM educational kit called Dash and Dot, which is one of many activities and tools in Dr. Betrus’ suite of STEM learning resources. Using a mobile app called Blockly, the team was able to connect wirelessly to the first robot, named Dash, and send a sequence of simple commands that instructed the robot how to move through an obstacle course in order to reach the “captured” second robot, Dot. The instructions for movement were organized by the students ahead of time and then sent to Dash, which followed them step-by-step without additional input from the students. The instructions themselves are very simple – for instance, they might instruct Dash to move forward for two seconds, then turn 90 degrees to the left, then move forward one second – but this process of anticipating obstacles and programming directions is in contrast to the sort of real-time interactions most students are used to when controlling a remote control car, or a vehicle in a video game, and requires planning and problem solving in order to be successful. As a group, the students collaborated on different combinations of instructions to send to Dash to navigate around several obstacles to reach Dot, initially finding their queued directions coming up short of success.  After several adaptations, they were able to program a successful series of instructions in Blockly to cause Dash to “rescue” Dot. “Working with Blockly in this way provides a fun and meaningful experience for students to work with code and to experience working as a team to systematically solve a problem using 21st century skills,” says Dr. Betrus, who, with his team, has been exploring educational curricula for students and teachers alike to work with robotics, programming, and other state-of-the-art STEM concepts, bringing these skills to schools and providing students and teachers a chance to experience these opportunities firsthand. The student response was fantastic and the 5th graders not only learned a bit about code but they also had a lot of fun doing it – by the end of the session the main question students had was “where can I get my own Dash and Dot?”



SmartLab Improves Math Scores at Denver School

Wednesday, June 14th, 2017

An elementary school in Denver sees dramatic improvements through the use of SmartLab in the 2016-2017 School year.

Academy of the Year 2017 - Martins Ferry School District

Friday, June 2nd, 2017

On May 19th 2017 the Martins Ferry School District was awarded the National Education Foundation’s Academy of the Year award. The District showed not only significant gains in their core subject areas but also demonstrated exceptional STEM skill abilities.

Martins Ferry Minecrafters in the News

Monday, March 6th, 2017

Clippings from the local newspaper in Martins Ferry, OH. Click the images to enlarge!