PRESS RELEASE: For Immediate Release
January 31, 2019
Holyoke High School and Holyoke STEM Academy Receive STEM Career Pathway Capacity Grant
Project Lead the Way programs provide hands-on, project-based learning and in-depth teacher professional development
HOLYOKE, MA – Holyoke High School and Holyoke STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) Academy announced today that they have received a grant to offer a new curricular program from Project Lead The Way that will better prepare students for career success. PLTW is a nonprofit organization that provides a transformative learning experience for PreK-12 students and teachers through pathways in computer science, engineering and biomedical science. Holyoke High School and Holyoke STEM Academy join more than 11,500 schools across the country offering PLTW programs to millions of students.
“We are excited to use these grant funds to launch our Project Lead The Way program for our students,” said Holyoke Public Schools Superintendent/Receiver Dr. Stephen Zrike. “We thank Project Lead The Way, Governor Baker’s Office, the One8 Foundation, and Mass STEM Hub for their generous support. These funds will be used to provide highly engaging, hands-on learning experiences for our students, such as coding and robotics, that will promote strong problem-solving and communication skills and help prepare them to excel in college, career and community leadership.”
Holyoke High School and Holyoke STEM Academy are two of the 58 schools across the Commonwealth to receive the grant, which is supported by the Administration of Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker and Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito, the One8 Foundation, and Mass STEM Hub.
“Engaging our students throughout their K-12 school years with hands-on lessons in science, engineering, computer science, technology and math will prepare them for success after high school and strengthen the Massachusetts workforce,” said Lt. Governor Karyn Polito, who co-chairs the STEM Advisory Council.
Holyoke High School will use their awarded $40,000 grant funds to start a PLTW Engineering program. “We are thrilled to offer Holyoke High School students a best-in-class engineering program that is scaffolded over three years,” said Holyoke High School Associate Principal Lily Newman. “The program will expose students to college-level work and prepare them effectively for future study and careers in engineering.”
Holyoke STEM Academy will establish a PLTW Gateway program with their $30,000 awarded grant funds. “The grant allows us to expand our PLTW programming as well as provide multiple opportunities for students to engage in real-world applications through science investigations,” said Holyoke STEM Academy Principal Katie DeMars.
The grant funding also supports teacher professional development and the purchase of materials and equipment that will be used in the hands-on, activity-, project-, and problem-based courses at both schools.
“We are proud to partner with Holyoke High School and Holyoke STEM Academy to empower students to develop the in-demand knowledge and transportable skills to thrive in our evolving world,” said Vince Bertram, PLTW president and CEO. “Thank you to the Governor’s Office, the One8 Foundation, and Mass STEM Hub for making these grants possible and further investing in Massachusetts’s students.”
About Holyoke Public Schools
Holyoke Public Schools (HPS) serves close to 5,500 students. The district is comprised of eight elementary schools (Donahue, Kelly, Lawrence, McMahon, Metcalf, Morgan, Sullivan, E.N. White), three middle schools (Peck, Holyoke STEM Academy, Veritas Prep Holyoke) and one high school with two campuses (Holyoke High School North and Dean Campuses). Eight schools contain PreK classrooms.
Holyoke Public Schools has designed multiple pathways of excellence where all students graduate prepared to excel in college, career and community leadership. The district is expanding choices for students through innovative programs, community initiatives and university partnerships that help students develop a wide range of skills and interests and explore college and career options. HPS students learn to become effective communicators, critical thinkers, engaged and productive community members, and mindful individuals. The district offers students the opportunity to graduate with additional credentials that expand their college and career options.
Project Lead The Way (PLTW) is a nonprofit organization that provides a transformative learning experience for PreK-12 students and teachers across the U.S. PLTW empowers students to develop in-demand, transportable knowledge and skills through pathways in computer science, engineering, and biomedical science. PLTW’s teacher training and resources support teachers as they engage their students in real-world learning. Approximately 11,500 elementary, middle, and high schools in all 50 states and the District of Columbia offer PLTW programs. For more information on Project Lead The Way, visit pltw.org.
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