The Tennessee Department of Education announced $30,000 in additional grants that will be awarded to Sumner County Schools to fund science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education and middle school career and technical education (CTE).
Funding is provided through Governor Lee’s Future Workforce Initiative, which is aimed at increasing access to CTE and STEM in the classroom. The Middle School STEM Start-Up and CTE Career Exploration Grants build upon Tennessee Department of Education’s Best for All strategic plan to support all students exploring career paths and having access to post-secondary opportunities. In the application process, Sumner County Schools demonstrated the ability to align courses from middle school to high school, provide career guidance and advisement for students, and expand upon employer partnerships to create pathways for students.
Congratulations to the following schools that will receive $10,000 each:
- Joe Shafer Middle School; Gallatin
- Knox Doss at Drakes Creek Middle School; Hendersonville
- T.W. Hunter Middle School; Hendersonville
“We are extremely excited to receive this grant from the TDOE to support, enrich and challenge students at Shafer Middle School,” Joe Shafer Middle School Principal Thomas Oglesby said. “As we continue to build our STEM program, we hope the early exposure throughout a student’s STEM experience will enhance their chances of success in a competitive workforce and in their post-secondary options. We are thankful to TDOE and Governor Lee for their continued support for STEM in middle schools and are looking forward to what our students will learn with this new equipment.”
Specific plans were mapped out by each school during the application process. The money will pay for the proposal that was created by the school. The funds will be utilized to purchase technology and equipment including codable drones, codable robots, and iPads. Additionally, 3D printers and Glowforge laser printers will be purchased to allow students enhanced engineering and marketing exposures.
"Ensuring our students have access to high-quality STEM and career and technical education is essential to building college and career readiness, and that work really begins before a student even enters high school,” said Commissioner Penny Schwinn. “Tennessee has worked diligently to align STEM and CTE coursework to provide students with clearer pathways when transitioning from middle to high school. This is such important work to helping all our students have access to post-secondary opportunities and be put on a pathway to success.”