High School District Receives Innovation Grant

Posted on April 21, 2013 by  
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The Google Community Grants Fund of Tides Foundation recently donated $80,000 to the Mountain View Los Altos Union High School District to support Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) curriculum and to purchase netbooks for students to use in classrooms and libraries.

The Teacher/Student STEM Innovation Grant will enable the district to address the challenge of improving the performance of students who live in poverty – approximately 20 percent of the total school population.

The district’s most critically underperforming students tend to be those who do not have access to resources available in abundance to other students, including laptops, tablets and smartphones. To help students catch up in math, science and English, the majority of underperforming students are enrolled in two math and/or English classes to allow more time to develop their skills and reach proficiency.

The district received Google grants in 2011 and 2012 to promote innovation in math, science and engineering classes. The grants funded projects that involved esterification studies, conducting experiments, studying ethanol production and algae as an alternative fuel source, extracting DNA to determine lactose intolerance and conducting home energy audits.

Teacher/Student STEM Innovation Grants are designed to improve teaching and learning and to increase enrollment and success in STEM classes by engaging students in hands-on, project-based learning experiences.

“The long-term value and impact we hope to generate through this project will go far beyond the walls of our schools,” said Brigitte Sarraf, associate superintendent of educational services.

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