Texas Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Initiative (T-STEM)
Texas Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (T-STEM) Academies are rigorous secondary schools focusing on improving instruction and academic performance in science and mathematics-related subjects and increasing the number of students who study and enter STEM careers. T-STEM Academies are demonstration schools and learning labs that develop innovative methods to improve science and mathematics instructions.
Prior to the 2011-2012 school year, the only path to becoming a T-STEM Academy was a T-STEM Academy grant through the Texas Education Agency or one of the private partners in the Texas High School Project.
Beginning with the 2011-2012 school year, a second pathway was created. Campuses, using local or other sources of funding, that are implementing the T-STEM Design Blueprint with fidelity may apply to be designated as a T-STEM Academy. T-STEM campuses are designated based on a rigorous designation process. Once a campus is designated, professional development and technical assistance are provided to designated T-STEM academies to serve as demonstration schools and learning labs to showcase innovative instruction methods which integrate technology and engineering into science and mathematics instruction. Designated T-STEM campuses serve students in grades 6-12 or 9-12.
BENCHMARK 1 – School Design
BENCHMARK 2 – Target Population
- Written admission policy and enrollment application
- Written recruitment plan including a timeline of recruitment and enrollment events, and recruitment materials for distribution at feeder schools and other appropriate locations in the community
- Brochures and marketing in Spanish, English, and/or other relevant languages (s)
- Written communication plan for targeting identified audiences, parents, community, members, school board, higher education personnel, etc.
BENCHMARK 3 – Strategic Alliances
- Meeting agendas and minutes, with action items and decision logs
- Final signed and executed MOU with IHE (Campuses must submit their final signed MOU to TEA when initially applying for designation or are provisionally designated)
- Final signed and executed MOU with a business/industry partner (Campuses must submit their final signed MOU to TEA when initially applying for designation or are provisionally designated)
- A list of strategic partners with each member’s organization, title, and role in providing work-based learning for students by grade level
BENCHMARK 4 – Curriculum, Instruction & Assessment
- Four-year crosswalk document
- Master Schedule 18-19
- Testing calendar and schedule for TSI, ACT, SAT or other assessment
- Documentation detailing a minimum of three courses of study examples that outline student pathway from high school, to associate degree, to industry certifications and beyond
- Curriculum alignment documents
BENCHMARK 5 – Work-Based Learning
- Documentation of appropriate work-based learning experience for students at all grade levels
- Current dated regional high demand occupation list
- Aggregate data describing student participation in work-based learning experiences as well as the percentage of students earning industry certification and credentials by type
- Samples of student artifacts such as writing, portfolios, presentations, or links to digital content