The Easton Area School Board decided on Tuesday night to move ahead with its plans to incorporate Project Lead the Way (PLTW) in its high schools. Funded by grant money, PLTW focuses on science, technology, engineering and math education in order to prepare students for the global economy, according to the organization’s overview.
Mr. Koch, the principal of grades 11-12 at Easton Area High School, gave an in-depth presentation to the school board in order to gain their permission to move forward with completion of their grant registration. He focused on PLTW’s Pathway to Engineering (PTE) program, which they plan to launch at Easton Area High School.
Introduction to Engineering Design, designed for 9th and 10th grade students, and Principles of Engineering, designed for 10th and 11th grade students, will be the first two courses implemented at the high school.
“Subsequent courses will be introduced annually so students will be able to receive up to 9 college credits prior to graduation,” Koch said.
The program will be made available to any college-prep, honors or AP student with an interest in engineering. The courses aim to be hands-on and problem-solving based.
Easton Area High School was awarded a grant of $35,000 to implement the PLTW program. The grant money will be given over three years beginning this July 2013. In the first year, Easton Area High School will receive $15,000. In July 2014 and July 2015, they will be given another $10,000.
Koch also updated the school board about the progress of Easton Area High School’s career and technical education programs. The Students Occupationally and Academically Ready (SOAR) program offers programs of study in childcare, administrative assisting, accounting, management information systems and pre-engineering. The SOAR program aims to reduce college costs by producing students already well prepared for the job market.
The school board expressed their continued support for the SOAR program. They also granted permission for Koch to move forward with PLTW at Easton Area High School.