Charlottesville City Schools has been nationally honored for integrating technology in support of innovative curriculum and improved student learning. The Center for Digital Education (CDE) ranked Charlottesville as top-10 winner (#5 among mid-sized divisions) in its 2016-17 Digital School Districts Survey Awards.
“We are proud to be recognized for our innovative work,” notes Dr. Rosa S. Atkins, Superintendent. “We know that the current and future marketplace will reward citizens who are adept in coding and other STEM skills. We are preparing our students for that future.”
Charlottesville City Schools takes an innovative approach to STEM education (science, technology, engineering, and math). Charlottesville High School offers a wide array of STEM options, including every AP class in science, math, and computer science; a popular environmental science program; and a four-year, college-credit engineering program. Students can also earn professional IT credentials through a partnership with industry leader CISCO, based at CATEC (Charlottesville-Albemarle Technical Education Center). The acclaimed engineering program at Buford Middle School is a partnership with the University of Virginia, the Smithsonian Institution, and Albemarle County and Fluvanna County Public Schools. This year, Charlottesville schools have developed and are piloting a hands-on iSTEM curriculum to make cross-curricular connections in classes such as art or history and to build foundational STEM skills beginning in the elementary schools.
All of this learning is supported by technology, whether in recently renovated science and engineering labs at Buford Middle School and Charlottesville High School, or via the Chromebook computers distributed to all students in grades 3-12.
“Even more important than our labs, computers, and course offerings are the staff members and leaders that make it happen and their commitment to continued professional learning and innovation,” states Director of Technology Jeff Faust. “Charlottesville City Schools recently hosted our fifth annual Google Summit, which supports our own teachers as well as educators from across the state who want to provide their students the best of what technology can offer for learning history, math, English, or any subject. It’s that spirit of continuing education and innovation that serves our students best.”
The honor was announced at the March 25-27 National School Boards Association annual meeting in Denver. Click here for more details in the release from the CDE.