5 Schools, One District Named STEM Lighthouse Schools
OLYMPIA — January 11, 2012 — A total of five schools and an entire district will be serving as Science, Technology, Engineering and Math mentors to other schools in the state.
Known as Lighthouse schools, the six entities were recently awarded $20,000 grants that will promote and develop STEM education, including technical assistance and advice for other middle schools and high schools that are creating their own STEM environments.
The five schools and one district are:
- Eastmont Junior High School (Eastmont School District)
- Secondary Academy for Success (Northshore)
- Science and Math Institute (Tacoma)
- Stewart Middle School (Tacoma)
- Toppenish High School (Toppenish)
- Odessa School District
“I congratulate all the lighthouse schools,” said Randy Dorn, state superintendent. “Each of them is taking a leadership role in STEM education and will serve as great models for the rest of the state.”
STEM Lighthouse schools originated in 2010 with the Legislature’s passage of House Bill 2621.The bill directs the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction to designate as many as three middle and three high schools each year as lighthouse schools. The schools “serve as resources and examples of how to combine the following best practices:
- Small, highly personalized learning communities;
- An interdisciplinary curriculum with a strong focus on science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM), delivered through a project-based instructional approach; and
- Active partnerships with businesses and the local community to connect learning beyond the classroom.”
In 2011, two schools and one district were awarded Lighthouse grants: Aviation High School (Highline School District), Komachin Middle School (North Thurston), and Mead School District.
The Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) is the primary agency charged with overseeing K–12 education in Washington state. Led by State School Superintendent Randy Dorn, OSPI works with the state’s 295 school districts and nine educational service districts to administer basic education programs and implement education reform on behalf of more than one million public school students.
OSPI provides equal access to all programs and services without discrimination based on sex, race, creed, religion, color, national origin, age, honorably discharged veteran or military status, sexual orientation, gender expression or identity, the presence of any sensory, mental, or physical disability, or the use of a trained dog guide or service animal by a person with a disability. Questions and complaints of alleged discrimination should be directed to the Equity and Civil Rights Director at (360) 725-6162 or P.O. Box 47200, Olympia, WA 98504-7200.
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