Elementary school students in Monrovia have a new resource to prepare them for the ever-changing world they live in. Beginning in August 2020, Immaculate Conception School in Monrovia will be Immaculate Conception STEM Academy. The new STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) curriculum at the academy will equip and empower STEM proficient students that will be able to answer complex questions, investigate global issues, develop solutions for challenges and real-world problems using rigorous science, technology, engineering, and mathematics content. The upgrade comes after the TK-8 Catholic elementary school was accepted as part of the second cohort of schools to the Archdiocese of Los Angeles STEM Network.
“Our staff and parents are thrilled about joining the STEM Network because it means that we can start early to prepare students for the millions of jobs that remain unfilled or that have yet to be created, while also nourishing their faith,” said Carmela Lovano, principal of Immaculate Conception STEM Academy. “This is an opportunity no parent in our community should miss. We’re confident these foundational skills of creative thinking and problem solving and the expansion of our STEM curriculum will give students the successful futures they deserve.”
The new school-wide approach to STEM focuses on real-world problem solving through a Catholic social justice lens and features parent engagement, university and community partnerships, and flexible indoor and outdoor learning spaces and environments. Immaculate Conception STEM Academy will follow a program model focused on STEM, with key features like specialized math and science teachers, starting from kindergarten. By implementing a system of block scheduling, the schools allow an authentic, real-world learning system. In the first year of the program, one grade band will follow the STEM path. After three years, the school expects to be fully STEM-integrated.
The STEM Network was launched in 2018 by the Archdiocese of Los Angeles Department of Catholic Schools to formalize and implement STEM education in elementary schools throughout Los Angeles, Santa Barbara and Ventura counties. The STEM Network is an all-encompassing learning ecosystem involving network schools, community partnerships, and intentional parent engagement which equips each member school to make a smooth transition to STEM. By empowering principals, teachers, parents, students and communities, their goal is to address some of the startling statistics related to STEM majors, especially in underrepresented groups.
“In partnership with parents and teachers, we want to give every child the skills to succeed in the world and the integrity to transform it,” says Leslie De Leonardis, director of the STEM Network. “We’re confident that the Catholic STEM combination sets up each child to receive that powerful gift.”
With Immaculate Conception STEM Academy, the five member schools include: Holy Spirit STEM Academy (Mid-Wilshire), Divine Saviour School (Cypress Park), St. Turibius School (DTLA), and San Gabriel Mission Elementary (San Gabriel).
Immaculate Conception STEM Academy is enrolling now. Visit their website to learn more and apply: icschoolmonrovia.org.