TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - When students at Marshall and McKinley Elementary school in Toledo start classes in the fall, their curriculum will look a lot different. There will be a new focus on STEM plus "M." That stands for Science, Technology Engineering, Math and Medicine.
The goal is for these new STEMM academies to help lead the next generation of innovators.
"Preparing kids for jobs that are gonna be in Northwest Ohio and across the country in the future," said Jim Gault, Executive Transformational Leader of Curriculum and Instruction for Toledo Public Schools.
Students will be given the tools needed to become problem solvers and critical thinkers. Chase STEM Academy is currently the only elementary school in the district with a STEM focus.
"We're going to add another M to that STEM. Instead of science, technology ,engineering and mathematics, we're gonna talk about medicine," said Gault.
All with the hopes of helping students become more competitive and perform at higher levels with highly motivated teachers.
"We know that these schools and programs come with obligations and requirements above and beyond what might be in a traditional school," said Kevin Dalton, President of Toledo Federation of Teachers.
Students can expect a more hands-on learning experience and classroom design tailored to the curriculum.
"We've been working with the district for over 25 years, and from a technology standpoint we've helped automate all of the facilities, and so we want to bring our technology to the students and help them find career paths," said Geoffrey Hunter with Palmer Energy.
The school district understands this "STEM plus M" approach does not fit everyone, and there are options for families that wish to go in another direction.
"For any parent that obviously doesn't wanna go down this STEM route, we'll talk with them about an out of district to another TPS school," Gault explained. "Parents that I think are gonna be excited about our STEM opportunities, we'll have parent meetings next week at both Marshall and McKinley to talk about these changes."