Working overtime for student success

Long after the school bell rings, announcing the start of summer break, teachers in St. Louis continue to make a difference in the lives of students.

This year at Washington University’s College Prep program, teacher leaders stepped up to invest in the lives of area high school students. The College Prep program brings high-achieving high school students with limited financial resources to the Danforth Campus to live and take classes for college credit over several weeks each summer after their freshman, sophomore and junior years of high school.

Teacher leaders worked with students to educate them on the most current research in energy during the science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) portion of the program. Using hands-on experiments, teachers challenged students to study and create alternative energy sources.

(ISP PHOTO) PARC teacher leader demonstrates how students can create biodiesel to power a small boat during the STEM portion of College Prep.

Many of the teachers partner with the Institute for School Partnership to regularly bring cutting-edge research to the classroom, as well as participate in the Photosynthetic Antenna Research Center (PARC) Teacher Leader program, which recognizes outstanding teachers and helps them identify, train and support K-12 students to take on energy-related challenges.

The PARC Teacher Leader program allows teachers to grow professionally by developing curriculum based on new research, designing hot topics workshops for other educators and teaching during the College Prep program.

“It is so important that teachers have the opportunity to take on leadership roles both in their classroom and in the community,” said Victoria May, executive director of the Institute for School Partnership. “We hope that through experiences like these, teachers will help to close the gap between the most current research and what is taught in the K-12 classroom.”

July 2015   |   by, Gennafer Barajas

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