Story by Mike Christen – The Daily Herald
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Educators and administrators at Maury County Public Schools are celebrating a major achievement for the school district this week.
Maury County’s Mt. Pleasant Elementary, Mt. Pleasant Middle School, and Mt. Pleasant High School and Randolph Howell Elementary have earned the Tennessee STEM School Designation, recognizing the local schools for a commitment to integrating STEM and/or STEAM learning.
The designation marks a step forward in the public school system’s ongoing effort to move from the traditional classroom environment and implement project-based learning emphasizing, science, technology, engineering, mathematics and the arts.
The schools are also the first pre-k through 12 cluster to receive designation in the state.
“We are beyond proud and excited to be recognized and designated as the state’s first and only PK-12 STEAM campus,” said Ryan Jackson, who oversees all three Mt. Pleasant campuses. “These designations are the culmination of hard work, commitment and belief in a unified vision of innovation and excellence.”
Jackson pointed toward the three campuses’ ongoing partnership with Kids On Stage of Maury County, a locally funded organization that supports students’ pursuit of the arts in Mt. Pleasant.
The foundation has invested $4 million in the city’s students since 1999.
“This undertaking is not possible without the unwavering support of our community, the unbridled passion of our teachers and the pursuit of learning at the highest level by our students,” Jackson said.
Major businesses with local presences including CLARCOR, Inc., formerly the Parker Hannifin Corporation, which supplied the high school with a $500,000 donation to fund a hands-on science and engineering lab along with a digital arts studio and broadcasting space.
Other local company’s continue to support the schools offering internships and training programs for students.