The Georgia Department of Education is dedicated to preparing students for 21st Century workplace careers by providing high quality educational opportunities in STEM fields. STEM represents the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. STEM education encourages a curriculum that is driven by problem solving, discovery, exploratory learning, and student-centered development of ideas and solutions. The saturation of technology in most fields means that all students – not just those who plan to pursue a STEM profession – will require a solid foundation in STEM to be productive members of the workforce.
DeKalb County School’s Hightower Elementary School was awarded STEM Certification today in a ceremony at the school. State School Superintendent Dr. John D. Barge presented the official banner and certification to the school’s principal, Mr. Oliver Lewis in an assembly of the entire staff and student body. Hightower is the second elementary school in DeKalb County to receive the rigorous certification status from the Georgia Department of Education. The school’s unique STEM program where every student from kindergarten to the fifth grade has two and a half hours of integrated math, science, and engineering every day set the standard for what STEM should look like in schools. Students are actively engaged daily with the engineering design process where high level math and science instruction is applied in a student-centered environment. Once a month the school offers an Engineer for a Day program where the students work on engineering design challenges for the entire day. Additionally, the school employs daily two and a half hour integrated blocks of social studies and English language arts where all language arts is taught from the social studies context.