New STEM Designations for Ohio Schools

Topics: Early College High School, Education Policy, ESSA

Six more schools in Ohio have received a STEM designation from the Ohio STEM Committee, a council of state-appointed policymakers, agency directors and business leaders. KnowledgeWorks is proud to be partnering with three of those schools: Marysville STEM Early College High School, Thurgood Marshall High School and Ridgeview Junior High School.

The Ohio Stem Learning Network (OSLN) works with schools to implement STEM practices and with school districts to start up new STEM schools. KnowledgeWorks has been partnering with OSLN for the last three years as a service provider, providing in-the-school professional development and advising to assist schools in implementing STEM best practices. The partnerships have been working.

“Being designated as an official STEM school by the state of Ohio is a reflection of several years of hard work and dedication from staff and students,” said Thurgood Marshall High School Principal Sharon Goins. “Official STEM designation will help us continue to build strong partnerships in the Dayton community. Through those partnerships we are able to provide students with authentic STEM experiences that wouldn’t be possible without the support of local universities and colleges, businesses and community organizations.”

KnowledgeWorks has been partnering with Thurgood Marshall High School in Dayton, Ohio, for the past two years. Amy Ochander, a Technical Assistance Coach with KnowledgeWorks, has been working with the school as it has worked to incorporate more problem-based learning and innovation in the classroom.

“This designation recognizes the great work happening at Thurgood Marshall High School,” said Ochander. “Over the past two years I’ve been working with them, I’ve seen great strides. The STEM designation is well earned.”

Marysville STEM Early College High School is a new school starting in Fall 2014. The school’s STEM designation reflects the hard work and planning that has gone into the school’s creation. Working with community partners like Honda of America Manufacturing, this will be Ohio’s first manufacturing-related STEM early college high school.

OSLN noted that the STEM designation was in part received because the Ohio STEM Committee “was strongly impressed by the solid and evidenced partnerships not only articulated within Marysville’s application but demonstrated by the work that has already started this school year.”

The STEM designation for Marysville STEM Early College High School leads to various opportunities for the school, said Principal Kathy McKinniss.

“The designation allows us to leverage the best practices of the Ohio STEM Learning Network as well as support and strengthen our partnerships to provide our students with real world problems and capstone experiences and mentorships,” McKinniss said. “The STEM designation holds us to our promise to produce critical, independent thinkers who value diversity, effective communication, innovation, problem solving and solutions and service to others.”

The third KnowledgeWorks partner school that received STEM designation is Ridgeview Junior High School in Pickerington, Ohio. The school is helping prepare students for a rigorous high school experience.

“Under the leadership of Principal Susan Caudill, students at Ridgeview Junior High School are being introduced to STEM in school-wide design challenges, through community and business partnerships and focusing on mastery in the classroom,” said Robin Kannan, National Director of Teaching and Learning at KnowledgeWorks. “When Ridgeview students move on to high school and beyond, they will have the tools necessary to succeed.”