December 9, 2013
Contact: Heidi Embley
Phone: (907) 742-4158
School board approves new charter school
Middle school program plans to be located in East Anchorage
The Anchorage School Board approved a proposal for the Anchorage STrEaM Academy Charter School at its meeting this week. STrEaM stands for science, technology, research, engineering, arts and mathematics. The school, intended to be located in east Anchorage, will be open to students in grades 6-8.
STrEaM's academic policy committee states the school will "empower students to be involved learners, critical thinkers and engaged citizens who are inspired by the natural world." Students will take classes in each of the four core areas of science, math, social studies and language arts, with much of the learning happening through interdisciplinary projects with relevance to real-world issues and the natural environment. Physical education will also be offered along with STEM electives such as Applied Technology.
The school must now submit its application to the State Department of Education and Early Development for final approval. STrEaM must also secure an appropriate facility by mid-February and meet targeted enrollment numbers in the March lottery in order to open its doors in August of 2014 or delay opening until 2015.
Andranel Brown, one of the charter founders, said the idea for STrEaM was sparked when several teachers were discussing how surprised they were that many of their students had never been on a hike before. "It would be pitiful for a child to grow up in Alaska and not experience its outdoors," she said. "We want to help change that."