Liberty County School System proud to showcase its STEM initiatives
It gives me great pleasure to write what I hope will be the first of many columns to highlight and get the word out about the high-performing, student-centered Liberty County School System.
I am excited about the work that our fine students are doing and the exceptional learning experiences that our administrators and teachers are providing for them each and every day. On a visit to any of our 14 learning sites, one will encounter learners and educators who are committed to living out our 2013-14 theme of “Navigating a Course of Excellence: Developing the 21st Century Learner.”
Highlighted in today’s “Getting the Word Out” column is the LCSS’ STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) initiative that is being launched at Snelson-Golden Middle School this spring and Frank Long Elementary later this summer.
Students at both sites will engage in hands-on learning tasks to broaden their knowledge in STEM fields of study that have been identified as most promising for employment opportunities of the 21st century. Economists and researchers alike note that STEM-field careers are some of the best-paying, and they have the greatest potential for job growth. Reports from the U.S. Department of Commerce also indicate that STEM workers play a key role in the sustained growth and stability of the national economy.
In partnering with Georgia Southern University, Snelson-Golden’s eighth-grade teachers are the first in the district to benefit from extensive professional-learning seminars and workshops that will enable them to deepen their students’ understanding of STEM content. By engaging them in rigorous, real-world, problem-based research activities that integrate science, technology, engineering and mathematics, SGMS teachers will prepare eighth-grade students to meet the academic challenges associated with transitioning to high school.
Adding an additional dynamic, the summer STEM camp at Frank Long also will include aspects of the arts, making FLE the first Liberty County school to engage its students in STEAM — science, technology, engineering, arts, mathematics. Lego robotics, computer science, dance classes, multimedia art projects and instrumentals comprise the lineup of content areas students will study. The week-long camp will serve as a springboard for future STEAM camps across the district.
LCSS high schools also have caught the STEM spirit. Recognized by the Georgia Department of Education as 2014 Advanced Placement Honor Schools, Bradwell Institute and Liberty County High School offer college-level course options and enrichment opportunities for AP and honor students. Students who earn a 3, 4 or 5 on AP exams receive transferable college credit while they are in high school.
Stay tuned for future STEM-education endeavors at the high-school level and others throughout Liberty County schools, and help us with getting the word out.
Lee’s school-system experiences include serving as superintendent in two Georgia school districts prior to her appointment as superintendent of schools in Liberty County.