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Hamilton High School gets Project Lead the Way certified

The Hamilton School District earned national certification for its Project Lead the Way (PLTW) program – making students eligible to receive college credits for coursework they have taken in high school.

Milwaukee School of Engineering Professor and PLTW Associate Affiliate Director Marvin Bollman presented a banner to the School Board Nov. 3 in recognition of Hamilton being named a “school of excellence.”

PLTW, the nation’s leading provider of science, technology, engineering and mathematics education, offers a rigorous curriculum that allows students to apply what they are learning in mathematics and science classes to real-life engineering and technology projects. The certification program recognizes schools that have successfully demonstrated a commitment to the quality national standards of the Pathway To Engineering program. Students may apply for college credit at more than 35 PLTW affiliate colleges and universities for completing certain courses in high school.

Technology education teachers Brian Steingraber and Steve Campeau attended the School Board meeting and helped present the banner. They are among six teachers in the district who have completed an intensive two-week professional development course during the summer for each course they teach during the school year.

PLTW courses offered at the high school are “Introduction to Engineering Design,” “Principles of Engineering” and “Digital Electronics.” At Templeton, traditional technology education courses were updated with the quarterlong “Gateway to Technology and Engineering” class and the full-year “Technology and Engineering Education.” In addition eighth-graders receive PLTW’s “The Science of Technology” unit in their science courses.

Hamilton Principal Candis Mongan said she was pleased Hamilton students will be able to begin receiving college credit for certain PLTW classes.

“We’ve seen how the PLTW program draws more students to engineering and technology courses and gets them thinking about college and their career,” Mongan said. “We are extremely proud to be PLTW certified.”

Mongan and a team composed of teachers, staff, students and members of the community completed a self-assessment of the school’s implementation of the Pathway to Engineering program that culminated in a site visit by a national PLTW certification specialist. The certification team met with teachers, administration, counselors, students, community representatives and reviewed student work.

“Hamilton High School has demonstrated its commitment to PLTW’s quality standards and the real winners are the Hamilton High School students,” said PLTW President and CEO John Locke.

“Students are benefitting from an innovative curriculum that encourages creativity and critical thinking,” Locke said. “We congratulate the entire Hamilton High School community and look forward to many more years of working together to prepare Hamilton High School students to become the most innovative and productive in the world.”

A National Business Roundtable report states that to remain competitive in the global marketplace, America needs to graduate 400,000 science, engineering, mathematics and technical four-year degrees annually, yet we are currently graduating only 265,000. PLTW is providing students with a foundation and proven path to college and career success in these areas.

Hamilton High School is located at W220 N6151 Town Line Road, Sussex.