The Utah State Board of Education (USBE) today approved 19 public schools for the Utah STEM School Designation. These schools, representing multiple locations statewide, are the first to receive the new designation.

USBE, in partnership with the Utah STEM Action Center, developed the Utah STEM Schools Designation program to better define the elements necessary to create a comprehensive STEM learning environment for students. The program provides schools the opportunity to engage in STEM-related discussions with faculty and community partners to develop strong instruction for students and prepare them for college and careers. The designation also serves as an indicator for members of the public who are looking for quality STEM school experiences in Utah K-12 education.

“Utah schools are creating outstanding learning communities that involve students, teachers, parents and industry partners,” said Dr. Sydnee Dickson, interim state superintendent of Public Instruction. “It is wonderful to see these STEM schools recognized for their commitment to college and career readiness for all students.”

The 19 schools completed comprehensive digital portfolios that demonstrated their excellence in STEM education, including student project-based learning, community partnerships and support for teacher professional learning. Utah stakeholders including current teachers, principals, district leaders and community council members evaluated each submitted portfolio and visited the schools that were awarded gold and platinum levels of school designation. The full application and review process occurred during the 2015-16 school year.

“The STEM Action Center is committed to supporting students in their education and career efforts,” said Dr. Tamara Goetz, executive director of the Utah STEM Action Center. “This program helps create an engaging learning environment, in partnership with teachers, principals and a school’s community. It provides students with greater choices and opportunities and helps address the talent needs of Utah’s growing science, engineering and technology companies.”

More information about the STEM School Designation is available on the STEM Action Center website: http://stem.utah.gov/for-educators/stem-schools-designation/.

To learn more about the 2016 STEM Schools, visit http://stem.utah.gov/stem-school-awardees-2016/.

STEM Designation Awards 2015-16:

Platinum STEM School Designation:
– Beehive Science and Technology Engineering Academy (Sandy)
– Crimson View Elementary School (St. George)

Gold STEM School Designation:
– DaVinci Academy (Ogden)
– Hurricane Elementary (Hurricane)
– Neil Armstrong Academy (West Valley City)
– Woodruff Elementary (Logan)

Silver STEM School Designation:
– Foothill Elementary School (Orem)
– Manila Elementary School (Pleasant Grove)
– Mountainville Academy (Alpine)
– Overlake Elementary School (Tooele)
– Quest Academy (West Haven)
– West Point Elementary School (West Point)

Bronze STEM School Designation:
– Green Acres Elementary School (North Ogden)
-Itineris Early College High School (West Jordan)
– Sunset Elementary School (St. George)
– Utah County Academy of Sciences (Orem)
– Draper Park Middle School (Draper)
– Mount Jordan Middle School (Sandy)
– Union Middle School (Sandy)