Washington, DC Public Schools to Implement EiE District Wide

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Tuesday, July 7, 2015

The District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS) has an ambitious new plan to enhance educational equity across the district, and one component is adoption of the EiE curriculum at all 75 of the district's elementary schools.

Starting in fall of 2015, DCPS will implement “Cornerstone Assignments”: rigorous, engaging learning experiences for grades K–12 that are taught in every school in the district. Six EiE units have been selected, one for each elementary grade.

“The Next Generation Science Standards put new emphasis on engineering, and EiE is great for engaging students in the engineering design process,” says DCPS elementary science specialist Jessica Buono.

“One goal within Cornerstones is for students to learn about different cultures,” adds James Rountree, director of science for DCPS. “EiE is enriching that way, too. It also does a really good job making connections to literacy.”

District wide implementation of EiE builds on pilot implementations in DCPS supported by Raytheon as part of a $2 million award to the Museum of Science, Boston for a far-reaching initiative that included creating a scalable, self-sustaining model for bringing engineering education to elementary students in three high-needs regions. Support for the Cornerstones initiative comes from a mix of public and private funding.

To prepare DCPS teachers for classroom engineering, an EiE team will conduct a workshop in July 2015 for a group of DCPS educators who will go on to prepare other K-5 teachers to implement EiE. By the end of the 2016 school year, 22,000 DCPS elementary students will have experience with hands-on engineering.

Engineering is Elementary is a project of the National Center for Technological Literacy at the Museum of Science, Boston.

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