JACKSON COUNTY, Ala. - Four Jackson County schools were awarded $5,000 for TVA STEMready grants.
Bridgeport Middle School teacher Crissen Light told WHNT News 19 that getting the grant is incredible. She said preparing her students for the future is why she wrote the grant.
“It’s important to start preparing them for a world that’s not here yet," said Light. "Jobs in 10, 15, 20 years from now, what are they going to look like, and what can we do now to prepare them for that."
It’s something Jackson County school officials agree with.
“If we can get our kids thinking in that STEM mindset, learning becomes easy and relevant and teaches them career readiness,” said Jackson County School District Curriculum and Instruction Supervisor AJ Buckner.
All Bridgeport middle schoolers will be getting that hands-on STEM education with drone kits they can build and fly with the skills they are learning today.
“The fifth grade is using number lines and fractions, multiplying and dividing, so obviously that will be a major part in configuring the drones and the mathematics side of it,” explained Light.
Skyline High School teachers are also excited to have earned the grant money.
“The best way to learn science is actually doing science,” said science teacher Michael Muratet. He wrote the grant for his students.
They will use their $5,000 to put measuring instruments and cameras on underwater ROVs.
“It will involve data analysis, math for data analysis. They’ll have to interpret water quality data to determine its suitability to sustain life, so it crosses into biology, so it rolls up a lot of S’s and T’s and E’s and M’s,” said Muratet.
After analysis, Skyline high schoolers will write and submit a manuscript to the Journal of Emerging Investigators, which is specifically for high school students.
The drones have not yet been purchased by Bridgeport Middle School.
The underwater ROVs for Skyline High School are currently on the way.
Section High School and Stevenson Elementary School were also awarded $5,000 TVA STEMready grants.
Section will be working on coding, careers, and inventors, while Stevenson will be creating a STEM lab.