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High School Rewarding Students Who Excel in STEM

It’s true that in many instances students are motivated by rewards or accolades no matter how simple they might be. In Montana, Billings Senior High School has created what they are calling a STEM society.

Students encouraged to reach heights in STEM learning that could in turn earn them a “letter in STEM” as part of this society. 

“There are several components to earning that letter,” reported MTPR.

“Part of that is tied to their grades, classes that they take, and their community involvement in STEM related things,” says Craig Beals, chemistry teacher and faculty advisor to the Senior High STEM Society, according to the report.

Overall Beals said that the STEM Society was created to increase enrollment over 5 years. The society acts as a sort of chain reaction in a sense. Students in high school reach out by mentoring younger students in elementary school in hopes to get them excited and interested in the world of STEM. Once the younger students make their transition to high school you can see where the cycle would begin again.

“To date, I have not heard of anything like the STEM Society that they have there,” says Angela McLean, a deputy commissioner in the Office of the Commissioner of Higher education, according to the report.

“Far too often we give letters for students who compete and do so successfully in athletics, I think anytime we can recognize academic achievement and leadership we ought to.”    

This model leverages the cool factor of older students who the younger kids look up to. Letterman jackets for sports give athletes a sense of pride in their accomplishments. The letter in science could potentially lead to students taking pride in their academic abilities.

Read the full story.  Article by Navindra Persaud, Education World Contributor

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