gmhTODAY 10 gmhToday Sept Oct 2016 - Page 27

Darren McDonald Principal El Toro Elementary Heather Nursement Principal Martin Murphy Middle School i Olacirqu Claudia ental Principal Environm /Gwinn in rt a M San cademy Science A ore Chris Mo l a ip c n ri P ool iddle Sch Britton M Morgan Hill Unified School District A Pathway for Young Tech Innovators This year, Lewis H. Britton Middle School partners with the Silicon Valley Tech Museum (“The Tech”) to become a Tech Academy of Innovation (2016-19). In doing so, Britton joins Brownell Middle School (a GUSD school), creating an engineering education pathway for students from their “feeder school,” P.A. Walsh Elementary, which became a tech academy in 2015. Principal Chris Moore told TODAY that Britton went through an extensive application process to become a tech academy. He said the Silicon Valley Tech Museum made a major financial and resource commitment as the school’s tech academy partner and mentor. This includes training and resource materials for Moore and four of his teachers, over the course of the three-year partnership. “I spent years in Cupertino school district before coming to Morgan Hill,” Moore said. “I’ve seen the power that STEM has in producing new generations of innovative thinkers who will lead Silicon Valley in the future. Our students are just as gifted and capable as those to the north and they deserve to have the same real-world, hands-on learning opportunities.” Principal Moore added that construction of the new Britton campus began during the summer, and that the new facility “will serve this STEM program very well.” gmh GILROY • MORGAN HILL • SAN MARTIN The Tech’s Director of School and Afterschool Partnerships, Christina O’Guinn, said they look for school districts with collaborative STEM program development and training efforts, and schools with strong teams motivated to teach and integrate engineering into school curriculum and activities while meeting Common Core and Next Generation Science Standards. Students and teachers at participating schools are also encouraged to participate in The Tech’s annual Tech Challenge. Visit thetech.org to learn more. Britton also received a Golden Bell award last year for “Data Driven Student Supports, From Intervention to Enrichment.” Through effective and systematic use of data, the school was able to quickly pinpoint needs of students for things like accelerated or remedial coursework in order to support student achievement. Moore said data-driven thinking permeates all kinds of campus activities. “We partnered with Specialized, which has donated fifty bikes to Britton. We’ll be using them in our physical education program, including a new spin (indoor cycling) class. Through a grant, we also purchased Polar heart rate monitors that students will use during workouts to check their heart rate, assess their fitness level, and set goals to main- tain or improve their fitness over the course of the school year.” SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2016 gmhtoday.com 27