Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Academy for 6th-8th-grade students in Fall 2018
We are redesigning the middle school experience for our students and are excited to share that we will be opening a middle school STEM Academy for students in the Fall of 2018. The desire to open a new middle school option is aligned with our vision of a pathway for every student and our desire to create more choice for students and families. It also fits in with our longer-term planning of having 2-3 middle schools for students in Holyoke in the next few years. All students currently zoned for EN White middle school are guaranteed a seat in the new school, although they could also select into the P3 (Personalized Pathways Program) at Peck or could request a different K-8 school, based on their address and availability.
We selected the STEM focus, based on community input, research and alignment with our high school redesign. Our 2015 family survey indicated significant support and interest in more STEM opportunities for students. STEM is highly engaging, hands-on learning that promotes strong problem solving and communication skills, which are needed through school and in all occupations. Additionally, the fastest growing and highest earning occupations are in the STEM fields, according to the U.S. Labor Department.
Where will the STEM Academy be located?
The school will be co-located with Dean Technical (which will be known as Holyoke High – South Campus, effective Summer 2018) at 1045 Main Street. The Main Street location has many advantages, including a facility with high-tech equipment and collaborative learning spaces, and a strong connection to our high school academies, two of which are STEM-focused and will launch next fall. (To read more about the high school academies and high school redesign, visit https://www.hps.holyoke.ma.us/turnaround/high-school-redesign/.
About the STEM Academy Task Force
A STEM Academy Task Force will solicit input from students, families, staff and community members and make recommendations on the design of the school to Dr. Zrike in the coming months. We want to ensure that the school we design is a strong match for the hopes and dreams of the community! If you have questions, please reach out to MSredesign@hps.holyoke.ma.us, and visit our middle school redesign website at https://www.hps.holyoke.ma.us/turnaround/msredesign/. We will add more content in the coming months.