District 205 is committed to using technology as an important learning tool across the board to prepare students for their future. STEM curriculum is focused on using existing math and science standards, delivering instruction through the engineering design process, and utilizing technology as the tool to integrate them all together seamlessly. The Foundation Board understands the importance of supporting this approach to education as we strive to best prepare District 205 students to move into higher education and/or careers in this current educational and employment environment.
- 2012: Provided sponsorship for York's STEM day
- 2013 & 2014: $29,530 in funding for data loggers that are utilized in science and math at all three middle schools.
- 2014: Received a $25,000 IL Dept of Commerce & Economic Opportunity Grant and combined it with additional Foundation funds for a total of $29, 257 to provide a Media:scape Learning Lab for York High School. This is currently housed in the Lincoln Lab at York.
- 2015: Support for Chromebook roll out and progress to 1:1 learning by funding three Chromebook carts for the middle schools at $26,559.
- 2015: Provided an $18,000 grant to York in order to help financially challenged families identified through the YSET process purchase Chromebooks for their students.
Nova 5000 STEM Signature Project
The Foundation's 2013/2014 Signature Project supported District 205’s STEM curriculum and instruction by funding close to $30,000 for Nova 5000 dataloggers and probes for middle school students to help prepare them for the challenges of high school math and science.
These technological devices with probe attachments enable the students to collect a variety of data, manipulate it and transfer it to software – all in one machine. These award-winning devices have been used in science classes both nationally and internationally with great success (click here to view videos). The NOVA5000:
- Allows students to conduct research, analyze data and solve problems through hands on inquiry-based approaches
- Transforms the traditional teacher-centered classroom
- Encourages curriculum driven by inquiry based problem solving, discovery and exploratory learning
- Requires students to actively engage a situation in order to find its solution
The academic disciplines of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) in connection with a balanced curricular approach, are critical components of innovation that will prepare students to function successfully in our rapidly changing world.