The CY Cergy Paris University has joined the Office of Astronomy for Education, OAE, after the International Astronomical Union, IAU, founded a new OAE branch office at the institution.
The OAE itself was founded in December 2019, marking the IAU’s commitment to primary and secondary education, in particular in the areas of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). Astronomical topics are particularly effective at fostering students’ interest in STEM subjects.
Establishment of OAE Office
The OAE head office was established by the IAU at the Haus der Astronomie and the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy in Heidelberg, Germany. Since then, the OAE has been building collaborations with partner organisations that share its mission — to promote and support the development and improvement of astronomy education, as well as the use of astronomy in science education more generally, all over the world.
OAE Centers, as well as the smaller OAE Nodes, are branch offices funded by host organisations with an interest in supporting that mission. The new branch joins seven existing ones: the OAE Center China-Nanjing, OAE Center Cyprus, OAE Center Egypt, OAE Center India, OAE Center Italy, OAE Node Republic of Korea and OAE Node Nepal.
The new Node will be led by manager Emmanuel Rollinde and deputy manager Giles Remy. The Node will assist with translation of material to and from French, focus on best practices for didactics in astronomy education and teacher training, and look to build relationships with the astronomy education communities in other Francophone countries.
IAU and OAU
IAU General Secretary José M. Rodriguez Espinosa said: “I am delighted that the OAE is expanding its network even further with the addition of the OAE Node France at CY Cergy Paris University. The OAE now has a total of eight institutes collaborating as Centers and Nodes, showing the enthusiasm the global astronomy community has for its work.“
The OAE’s Director, Markus Pössel, added: “Given its worldwide scope, our mission to promote the use of astronomy for teaching and school-level education is only achievable with broad support. We are grateful to be joined in our endeavours by the new OAE Node France at CY Cergy Paris University — the expertise that Emmanuel Rollinde and his colleagues bring to the table is valuable indeed, and given the international role of the French language, we are glad that the new OAE Node has chosen as one of its focus areas the support of French-speaking communities in general.”
CY Cergy University
Emmanuel Rollinde of CY Cergy Paris University, manager of the new Node, said: “We are glad to join the international effort led by OAE’s team. The OAE Node France at CY Cergy Paris University has been created to help a network of astronomers, educators and mediators, to bring astronomy to education. The core team in our office involves astronomers, mathematicians and science education researchers and educators at CY Cergy Paris University. Our first task is to bring all francophone astronomy educators together through our website and its ‘directory of members of the astronomy education community’. We are looking forward to this fruitful collaboration with OAE and IAU in general.”
This report was first published by IAU.