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WakeEd Partnership Embeds WCPSS Teachers in Six Area Companies

New "SummerSTEM" Program Aims to Enhance Classroom Instruction and Close the Gap Between Classroom and Workplace

Raleigh, NC, July 16, 2015 --( WakeEd Partnership (WakeEd), a nonprofit organization committed to improving public education in Wake County, is inserting 50 Wake County Public School System (WCPSS) educators into six area businesses on Wednesday, July 15 and Thursday, July 16 as part of its SummerSTEM program. Each participating educator will spend 16 hours (8 a.m. – 4 p.m. each day) embedded in two of the following companies: Biogen, LORD Corporation, the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT), Red Hat, and SAS. SummerSTEM exists to enrich each educator’s understanding of the knowledge and skills necessary to succeed in careers involving Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM).

At SummerSTEM, educators experience actual work-based practices used in STEM organizations. Professionals share their real-life strategies with schools to make a “STEMpact” on education. These practices will reach the next generation of STEM professionals – students – at their primary point of contact – schools. The program includes a five-day professional development course that includes direct instruction in project-based learning, observation of community college instruction in STEM fields, and immersion in STEM work settings with STEM professionals. WakeEd partnered with Wake Technical Community College and North Carolina New Schools to provide college training and training for the host sites, respectively. In addition to training the host sites, NC New Schools will work with the educators to ensure they gain the most from their SummerSTEM experience.

After their time with the companies, educators will develop a teaching unit that synthesizes their experiences and meets the WCPSS Vision 2020 goals for teaching and learning. WCPSS teacher leaders will coach the participants as they develop their units and help the educators to continue their relationship with businesses as the school year progresses.

“Preparing students for productive citizenship as well as higher education or a career is the most important goal of our schools,” WakeEd President Steve Parrott said. “How can our teachers prepare students for future jobs without knowing how the curriculum connects to the workplace? SummerSTEM supports our Wake County Public School System teachers by providing professional development in project-based learning and immersing them in real world experiences at STEM companies throughout the Triangle.”

While we cannot guarantee admission to participating companies, if you would like to shadow the teachers during SummerSTEM, please contact WakeEd Director of Programs Teresa Pierrie at 919-247-9216.

About WakeEd Partnership
WakeEd Partnership is an independent, nonprofit organization comprised of business and community leaders committed to improving public education. Since 1983, the Partnership has advocated for excellent educational opportunities for all students in the Wake County Public School System. For more information, please visit
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Jeff Turner

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