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Boston Public Schools pioneer STEM Immersion Program with Boston STEM Week

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Boston Public Schools Superintendent Tommy Chang joined Mayor Martin Walsh, School Committee Chairperson Michael O’Neill and i2 Learning Founder Ethan Berman in kicking off STEM Week at the Perry K-8 School in South Boston.

From October 3 to 7, more than 6,500 sixth, seventh and eighth grade students from 36 Boston middle schools are introduced to the engineering design process and use hands-on science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) curriculum as part of the first-ever, week-long Boston STEM Week.

The five-day program replaces regular middle school classes with an immersive curriculum in which students and teachers work together to explore space, build robots and practice surgical techniques leveraging active learning in STEM to solve real-world problems that encourage hands-on experimentation, critical thinking and collaboration.

Under the program students are encouraged to use their heads, hands and the people around them to make connections and succeed in an environment similar to that of college or the workforce.

“This program will have a long-term impact on the city, starting with teacher development and continuing through to further develop critical thinking skills and confidence over the course of the week,” Chang said.

Boston STEM Week is funded through foundation and corporate support and is provided at no cost to Boston Public Schools. The week-long program was developed by i2 Learning in collaboration with lead sponsor MathWorks, curriculum partner MIT, program sponsors Vertex, Lynch Foundation and Boston Foundation.

Volunteers from STEM corporations also are visiting the classrooms, giving students a view into career pathways. Boston STEM Week will culminate with a student-led showcase at each school, where students will present their work to their families, friends and communities.