We Heard You – STEM in Our Schools

Manhattan Beach parents, business leaders, educators, and community members invest their time, talents and financial resources to transform our school District into a model for what public education can be. In 2014/15, 5,642 donors supported MBEF by making a gift to strengthen our schools. As a result, this year MBEF will provide more than $6.16M in funding for K-12 programs, paying for 71 educators and supplementing nine percent of our District’s budget. This is an incredible achievement that speaks volumes about our community’s commitment to our schools.

In our recent parent and teacher survey, an overwhelming majority of parents and teachers asked MBEF to prioritize the expansion of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) programming in our District. This year, MBEF is funding close to $1M in STEM programs, including:

  • Professional Development in Math: Through this grant, UCLA Center X, a leader in Common Core implementation and teacher education, will provide best practices and coaching for teachers throughout the District.
  • Professional Development in Science: Manhattan Beach Middle School (MBMS) is moving to Next Generation Science Standards, and through funding from MBEF, the Science and Math Programs will conduct curriculum mapping from K-12.
  • Project Lead the Way (PLTW): PLTW is the nation’s leading provider of K-12 STEM programs. Their curriculum is hands-on, project-based, and data-backed.
  • STEM and MakerSpace Teachers: This year, MBEF is funding five credentialed STEM Teachers who provide elementary students with hands-on lab experience that strengthens students’ passion for science.
  • Technology Teachers: To ensure that technology is being used effectively, MBEF is funding two “Teachers on Special Assignment” who support teachers to integrate technology into instruction.
  • Innovation Grants to Teachers: These grants provide our educators with an opportunity to exercise their passion for teaching, and partner with colleagues to strengthen curricula.
  • Additional STEM Classes: This year MBEF has provided funding to add three additional units of STEM at MBMS, so that every child who applied to take a STEM course has been offered a spot.
  • Science Lab Assistant at Mira Costa: The Lab Assistant supports science teachers by making lab instruction organized, efficient and inspired. In our new state-of-the-art Math and Science building, the Lab Assistant helps teachers to strengthen students’ learning through hands-on projects and instruction.

The U.S. Department of Commerce estimates that STEM related jobs will grow 17% by 2018 – nearly double the growth for non-STEM fields. As such, we are excited about how this year’s funding will transform the way our children engage with innovation and how our District will better prepare our children for next generation opportunities.

In addition to strengthening and enriching the academic programs, we have learned that our community is eager for opportunities to come together to learn about best practices in education and parenting. We are proud of our continued partnership with TedXManhattanBeach that last year drew over 600 attendees. In addition, this year we look forward to sharing more information with our parent community about MindUP, our District’s new social emotional learning curriculum, college preparation and testing, and panel discussions with Common Sense Media about healthy and age-appropriate media and technology usage.

Finally, we would like to recognize and thank the MBEF and Endowment Board Members whose expertise and guidance play a critical role in our growth and success. We are also truly grateful for the ongoing financial support, feedback and volunteerism of our community. It is through this overwhelming generosity of time, talent, and dollars that we are able to provide educational opportunities that enrich and empower the children in our community.

If you have questions, concerns, or feedback, please don’t hesitate to call us at 310.303.3342 or send me an email at [email protected].

Thank you for your support!

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