Community Profiles and Local Partners: SSEP Mission 4 to ISS


Mission 4 is Community’s First SSEP Flight Opportunity: Yellow
Mission 4 is Community’s at Least Second SSEP Flight Opportunity: Green
View SSEP Mission 4 to ISS Communities on a larger map


SSEP Mission 4 to ISS

Experiment Design Competition and Selection of Flight Experiments: Winter/Spring 2013
Flight to ISS: launched January 9, 2014, on Orbital Sciences 1 (Orb-1; Antares rocket and Cygnus spacecraft), returned to Earth March 10, 2014, on Soyuz 36S (see Flight Profile page)

 

The 11 communities profiled below are providing the opportunity for 3,900 grade 5-12 students to design and propose real microgravity experiments for flight aboard the International Space Station (ISS) as part of SSEP Mission 4 to ISS – the sixth SSEP flight opportunity. Mission 4 is the third SSEP flight opportunity for the Indiana State Science Education Consortium.

Each community conducts a local Flight Experiment Design Competition with student teams designing microgravity experiments across multiple disciplines. Each team submits a formal research proposal, vying for an experiment slot reserved just for their community in a real research mini-laboratory scheduled to fly on the International Space Station. The Mission 4 to ISS community leadership project that across the network of 11 communities a minimum of 3,540 students will be fully engaged in experiment design, and a minimum of 755 flight experiment proposals from student teams will be received.

A total of 51,200 grade preK-12 students are being given the opportunity to participate in SSEP Mission 4 to ISS community-wide programming, which includes the design of Mission Patches to fly aboard ISS. Through community engagement activities, together with microgravity experiment design, a total of 112 schools in 7 States are taking part in Mission 4 to ISS.

For 8 of the 11 communities, Mission 4 is made possible in part by a grant from the Center for the Advancement of Science in Space (CASIS) to the National Center for Earth and Space Science Education. CASIS is a National Partner on the Student Spaceflight Experiments Program.  For 3 of the 11 communities, Mission 4 is made possible in part by a grant from Subaru of America. With Mission 4, we are proud to welcome Subaru of America as a National Partner on the Student Spaceflight Experiments Program.

More generally, Mission 4 to ISS is made possible through the involvement of 66 Local Partner institutions, including school districts, corporate foundations, universities, community foundations, and companies, and which are providing both underwriting and material and human resources. This includes support from 3 NASA Space Grant Lead Universities, including: Cornell University, New York; Purdue University, Indiana; and PennState, Pennsylvania.

The level of partnership is remarkable, and speaks to what a team of partners at the local, state, and national levels can do together in STEM education.

Visit the SSEP In the News page and the In Our Own Words page to gain an understanding of program impact over the prior SSEP flight opportunities.

 

1. Highlands Ranch, Colorado

Program Scope
Experiment Design Competition: 300 grade 6 and 8 students given opportunity (required) to participate
Expected Minimum Number of Students Fully Engaged in Experiment Design: 300
Expected Minimum Number of Student Team Proposals: 100

SSEP Community-wide Engagement Program (includes mission patch design): 600 grade 6-10 students given opportunity to participate

Number of participating schools: 1; experiment design and mission patches: STEM School and Academy

Community Statement on SSEP and Strategic Alignment to Local STEM Education Need
STEM School and Academy is a fully immersed STEM educational facility and all of our students have extensive requirements for all branches of STEM education. The challenge has been to extend real-world relevant opportunities to our students. Part of our curriculum is to require that students not only complete experiments but to design them as well. However, it is sometimes difficult to show a tangible real-world connection. SSEP allows our students to make those connections. In particular, the requirement to design an experiment according to an exacting set of lab specifications has really forced our students to understand why we work on many of these components in class. We also used SSEP as a way to ignite interest in science by allowing our students to choose any branch of science to work with. Our goal was for our students to focus on an idea that was really exciting to them and the very large majority of these students created some extremely interesting designs.

Partner Institutions
STEM School
Douglas County School District

Raytheon Company
Subaru of America, Inc., SSEP National Partner
Center for the Advancement of Science in Space (CASIS)SSEP National Partner
National Center for Earth and Space Science Education
OtterCares Foundation

SSEP Mission Participation
Mission 4 to ISS

SSEP Community Program Co-Directors
Sharon Combs
Educator, STEM School
sharon.combs@stemhigh.org

Leanne Weyman
Assistant Principal, STEM School
leanne.weyman@stemhigh.org

Cody Blackburn
Middle School Principal, STEM School
cody.blackburn@stemhigh.org

 

2. Indiana State Science Education Consortium, Indiana

Noteworthy: this is the third SSEP flight for Consortium partner Avicenna Academy

Program Scope
Experiment Design Competition: 408 grade 5-8 students given opportunity to participate
Expected Minimum Number of Students Fully Engaged in Experiment Design: 408
Expected Minimum Number of Student Team Proposals: 30

SSEP Community-wide Engagement Program (includes mission patch design): 1,240 grade K-12 students given opportunity to participate

Number of participating schools: 2; experiment design and mission patches: Avicenna Academy, Eastern Pulaski Community School Corporation

Community Statement on SSEP and Strategic Alignment to Local STEM Education Need
There is a clear connection between the investigative skills that are fine-tuned through scientific exploration and problem-solving ability. With the job market’s transition from national to international playing fields, problem-solving ability and critical thinking skills are the tools our students will need to get a job in competitive fields. Additionally, in order to find solutions to the increasingly complex problems that the world faces such as resource scarcity, global warming, and epidemic disease, tomorrow’s world leaders, scientists and engineers will need to possess the very skills that SSEP develops and hones in students today.

In addition to aiding students in building skills that are crucial, SSEP provides opportunity for the adult leaders to continue their education in STEM fields and to gain additional skills in technology and within laboratory settings. Many studies have shown that teacher familiarity and comfort with technology translates into more effective use of technology within the classroom and ultimately more effective teaching. Each school member of our community has expressed a desire to increase teacher comfort in STEM fields and through the collaborative nature of SSEP, we will no doubt be expanding our proficiency as educators in these areas so that we will meet the needs of our 21st century students.

Partner Institutions
Avicenna Academy
Eastern Pulaski Community School Corporation

Indiana Space Grant Consortium
Legacy Foundation
Center for the Advancement of Science in Space (CASIS)SSEP National Partner
National Center for Earth and Space Science Education
NIPSCO
Dean and Barbara White Family Foundation
Plymouth Tube Company
Carroll White REMC
Pulaski County CDC/Economic Development

SSEP Mission Participation
Mission 4 to ISS

Mission 1 to ISS
(see Mission 1 community profileflight and honorable mention experiments, and flight mission patches)

SSEP on STS-135, the final flight of Space Shuttle Atlantis, and of the U.S. Space Shuttle Program
(see STS-135 community profileflight and honorable mention experiments, and flight mission patch)

SSEP Community Program Co-Directors
Amanda Arceo
Principal, Avicenna Academy
ms.arceo.avicenna@gmail.com

Darlene Gordon
STEM Coordinator & Science Teacher, Eastern Pulaski Community School Corporation
gordond@epulaski.k12.in.us

 

3. Huron County, Michigan

Program Scope
Experiment Design Competition: 300 grade 5-12 students given opportunity to participate
Expected Minimum Number of Students Fully Engaged in Experiment Design: 300
Expected Minimum Number of Student Team Proposals: 60

SSEP Community-wide Engagement Program (includes mission patch design): 760 grade K-12 students given opportunity to participate

Number of participating schools: 20; experiment design and mission patches: Laker Elementary, Laker Jr. High, North Huron High School, Laker High School; mission patches only: Cross Lutheran School, Huron County K-8 Rural Schools (Big Burning, Adams, Kipper, Church, Eccles, Verona Mills), Bad Axe Elementary, Bad Axe Jr. High, Ubly Community Schools, Owendale-Gagetown Area Schools, Port Hope Community Schools, Caseville Public Schools, Harbor Beach Community Schools, Zion Lutheran, St. John Lutheran Port Hope

Community Statement on SSEP and Strategic Alignment to Local STEM Education Need
The Huron Intermediate School District (HISD) covers an area of over 835 square miles, with over 90 miles of Lake Huron coastline, and over 700+ square miles of agricultural land. Huron County’s population of 33,100 residents is comprised of about 39 people per square mile. The “rural” or “remote” nature of the District creates an access problem for its 5,000 students, grades K-12. Students often travel up to forty minutes by bus to get to school and often do not make it to museums and cultural venues located well over 70 miles from their homes. This “access” issue is further complicated by the fact that all schools in Huron County are Title I School-wide buildings (50% free or reduced meals). Geography and economics somewhat hold our students hostage from STEM opportunities that students from other areas find commonplace (museums, university summer camps, etc.). Despite this “access” issue, HISD has worked tirelessly to provide local students with engaging science opportunities.

Huron County youth have few local examples of STEM careers. SSEP connects students with STEM experts that provide advice and guidance. SSEP puts students in the role of researcher and scientist, despite the fact that they do not see these careers on a regular basis, so that  STEM-related careers look and feel realistic and tangible. SSEP involves students in a national competition, and provides HISD connection to a national network of STEM education communities.

HISD school districts have closely considered how to encourage students to apply high level problem solving skills which are required by the Michigan adopted Common Core Curriculum, while meeting career readiness standards. In transitioning to the Next Generation Science Standards, with a focus on doing science with cross-curriculur and engineering connections, the SSEP program offers a model of how science can and should be done. In order to meet the expectations of scientifically literate, highly engaged, and well-rounded students, programs like SSEP offer a roadmap toward creating project-based and highly engaging science. Students are doing and learning science at the same time. SSEP Mission 4 will provide a great opportunity for both students and teachers (as well as administrators, parents, and community) to visualize and experience the future of STEM education – cross curriculum/field (within the science arena), engaging, project-based, challenging, research and discovery-based, hands-on, connected to engineering and the real world, and exciting.

Partner Institutions
Lead: Huron Intermediate School District
Bad Axe Public Schools
Caseville Public School
Elkton-Pigeon-Bay Port Laker Schools
Harbor Beach Community School District
North Huron School District
Owendale – Gagetown Area Schools
Port Hope Community Schools
Ubly Community Schools

Center for the Advancement of Science in Space (CASIS)SSEP National Partner
National Center for Earth and Space Science Education
Cooperative Elevator Company
Dow AgroSciences Harbor Beach Operations
Harbor Beach Community Hospital
Huron Medical Center
Huron Tool & Engineering

SSEP Mission Participation
Mission 4 to ISS

SSEP Community Program Co-Directors
Scott Whipple
Co-Director of Math-Science Center, Huron Intermediate School District
Swhipple@hisd.k12.mi.us

Kathy Dickens
Student Services Director, Elkton-Pigeon-Bay Port Laker Schools
kdickens@lakerschools.org

 

4. Warren, Michigan

Program Scope
Experiment Design Competition: 300 grade 7-12 students given opportunity to participate
Expected Minimum Number of Students Fully Engaged in Experiment Design: 300
Expected Minimum Number of Student Team Proposals: 80

SSEP Community-wide Engagement Program (includes mission patch design): 688 grade 9-12 students given opportunity to participate

Number of participating schools: 15; experiment design and mission patches: Macomb Mathematics Science Technology Center, Community High School, North Star Academy; mission patches only: Warren Mott High School, Sterling Heights High School, Cousino High School, Lakeview High School, Lakeshore High School, Southlake High School, Clintondale High School, Fraser High School, Warren Woods Tower High School, Fitzgerald High School, Centerline High School, St. Clair High School

Community Statement on SSEP and Strategic Alignment to Local STEM Education Need
The mission of the Warren Consolidated Schools, in partnership with families and community, is to achieve a level of excellence in teaching and learning which enables all students to become knowledgeable, productive, ethical, and successful citizens. Despite the current harsh economic climate in Michigan, the stakeholders of Warren Consolidated Schools are fully committed to providing an outstanding world-class educational program for every one of its 15,916 students. Top rate scientists, inventors, and explorers are needed to help lead the U.S. achievement in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. To help meet that goal, Warren Consolidated Schools strongly supports programs such as the Student Spaceflight Experiments Program (SSEP) which give students a real hands-on experience in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education.

The SSEP program provides an opportunity for students to engage in inquiry-based learning that ultimately takes students’ ideas into practice. SSEP gets students and the community excited about science through full emersion in experimental design, group research, and public presentations. The SSEP program emphasizes the importance of STEM education for our students, the district, and the entire community. The program reinforces the fact that students can successfully complete meaningful research for mankind. SSEP fits naturally within Warren Consolidated Schools’ curriculum guidelines which aim to inspire, engage, and prepare students to be successful in further education and careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. The SSEP model can serve as a wake up call for our nation to begin focusing on real-life STEM educational opportunities for students.

Partner Institutions
Warren Consolidated Schools (WCS)

Chrysler Corporation
DTE Energy
Beaumont Health System

SSEP Mission Participation
Mission 4 to ISS

SSEP Community Program Co-Directors
Mark Supal
Technology Teacher, Macomb Mathematics Science Technology Center
marsup@wcskids.net

Christine Kincaid Dewey
Mathematics Teacher, Macomb Mathematics Science Technology Center
Dewey@wcskids.net

 

5. New York City, New York – Children First Network 201

Program Scope
Experiment Design Competition: 300+ grade 5-12 students given opportunity to participate
Expected Minimum Number of Students Fully Engaged in Experiment Design: 300
Expected Minimum Number of Student Team Proposals: 100

SSEP Community-wide Engagement Program (includes mission patch design): 300+ grade 5-12 students given opportunity to participate

Number of participating schools: 11; experiment design: Staten Island Technical High School, Millennium Brooklyn, Scholars’ Academy, NEST+m, PS 425, PS 496, Bronx High School of Science, Thomas A. Edison High School, Richmond Hill High School, G.W. Carver H.S. for the Sciences, High School for Math Science and Engineering

Community Statement on SSEP and Strategic Alignment to Local STEM Education Need
The NYC Department of Education notes that “to successfully prepare all students — including students with disabilities and English language learners — for life after high school, teachers need to create demanding learning experiences in their classrooms every day.” This need for demanding learning experiences requires educators and school building leaders to bring new and innovative approaches to student learning. The Student Spaceflight Experiments Program will give high school students in CFN 201 the opportunity to design and propose a science experiment to be conducted aboard the International Space Station in a microgravity environment. This process mirrors the way professional scientists compete for federal and state grants to conduct research in their laboratories. By engaging students in the flight experiment design competition, principals, assistant-principals and teachers throughout CFN 201 will embed integral components of the NYS Common Core Learning Standards into their curriculum.

Partner Institutions
Children First Network 201
New York City Department of Education

New Explorations into Science, Technology + Math (NEST+m) PTA
New York NASA Space Grant Consortium, Cornell University

SSEP Mission Participation
Mission 4 to ISS

Mission 3 to ISS
(see Mission 1 community profileflight and honorable mention experiments, and flight mission patches (coming soon)

SSEP Community Program Co-Directors
Zach Vine
5th Grade Teacher, New Explorations into Science, Technology and Math
zvine@schools.nyc.gov

Joseph Zaza
Children First Network 201, Network Leader
jzaza@schools.nyc.gov

 

6. Rochester, New York

Program Scope
Experiment Design Competition: 275 grade 9-11 students given opportunity to participate
Expected Minimum Number of Students Fully Engaged in Experiment Design: 275
Expected Minimum Number of Student Team Proposals: 50

SSEP Community-wide Engagement Program (includes mission patch design): 275 grade 9-11 students given opportunity to participate

Number of participating schools: 1; experiment design and mission patches: Rochester Early College International High School

Community Statement on SSEP and Strategic Alignment to Local STEM Education Need
The essence of the SSEP program addresses the RECIHS goal of creating globally-competent, career and college ready students by engaging in real-world, authentic tasks with public exhibition of student work as a culminating task. Student engagement and excitement about science are heightened by the realization that one of their experiments will actually fly aboard the International Space Station. Our students exhibit a great deal of fascination with space, and the anticipation of having their work actually flying aboard the ISS will stimulate many of our students beyond their usual levels of engagement.

The experimental design phase of the SSEP addresses multiple RCSD Science Processing Skills. The experimental design phase involved all students in developing testable questions about real world phenomena. All students were required to follow procedures specific to the SSEP program to create hypotheses relevant to microgravity experiments, and design experiments to test their hypotheses. The experimental design process addressed standards in every content-specific state standard, as well as using myriad Science Process Skills from state and local science standards. All students were required to participate in researching information and posing questions, followed by designing an experiment/conducting an investigation to test a hypothesis, and identifying and controlling variables in the experiment.

The development of the written proposals for evaluation by a Local Review Board addresses the Science Processing Skills of communicating through a specific written format.

For the student team whose experiment is selected for flight, students will engage in additional Science Processing Skills, including making decisions, manipulating materials, measuring, collecting and organizing data, constructing and interpreting graphs, analyzing and interpreting results and data, seeking and providing evidence and forming conclusions.

In short, the SSEP provided all RECIHS scholars a real-world immersion into STEM activities in a high interest, exciting and engaging project.

Partner Institutions
Rochester Early College International High School
Rochester City School District

Rochester Area Community Foundation
Asia Society International Studies School Network

SSEP Mission Participation
Mission 4 to ISS

SSEP Community Program Co-Directors
Mary Courtney
Teacher, Chemistry and Environmental Science, Rochester Early College International High School
mary.courtney@rcsdk12.org

Marlene Blocker
Principal, Rochester Early College International High School
Marlene.Blocker@RCSDK12.ORG

 

7. Downingtown, Pennsylvania

Program Scope
Experiment Design Competition: 650 grade 9-11 students given opportunity to participate
Expected Minimum Number of Students Fully Engaged in Experiment Design: 400
Expected Minimum Number of Student Team Proposals: 75

SSEP Community-wide Engagement Program (includes mission patch design): 12,000 grade K-12 students given opportunity to participate

Number of participating schools: 15; experiment design and mission patches: Downingtown STEM Academy; mission patches only: Downingtown East High School; Downingtown West High School; Lionville Middle School; Downingtown Middle School; Beaver Creek Elementary School; Bradford Heights Elementary School; Brandywine Wallace Elementary School; East Ward Elementary School; Lionville Elementary School; Pickering Valley Elementary School; Shamona Creek Elementary School; Springton Manor Elementary School; Uwchlan Hills Elementary School; West Bradford Elementary School

Community Statement on SSEP and Strategic Alignment to Local STEM Education Need
The Downingtown STEM Academy is a magnet high school in the Downingtown Area School District. As a STEM school, the curriculum is strongly focused around STEM education and the rigors of the International Baccalaureate. Students are required to enroll in a minimum of 4.0 courses of mathematics, 5.0 courses of science, and 1.0 courses in engineering. With the flexibility of the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program, students may enroll in up to seven science courses not including experiential learning in STEM pathways. During the STEM pathways in their junior and senior years, students choose semester-long STEM subjects and delve into the application of knowledge in STEM fields. In their senior year, students can schedule an internship in a STEM field to complete a STEM pathway requirement.

The Student Spaceflight Experiments Program will provide students a real-world scientific work experience as they compete for the opportunity to have their experiment chosen for the flight. The competition that is generated by this opportunity mirrors that of any scientist or business person that is trying to win either a grant or a bid for a job. They must provide the best proposal to accomplish the task while continuing to work within the constraints of a client. The greatest way that the students at the Downingtown STEM Academy will benefit from SSEP is through the continued work with our partners. This will open additional opportunities for students to interact with industry professionals as they move through their high school career. The learning and guidance that our partners can provide goes well beyond the curricula and can focus on the career aspirations of a student as well as their skills in communication and teamwork.

The Student Spaceflight Experiments Program can help the DASD STEM Academy bring authentic learning experiences to our students. First, SSEP reinforces the concept that STEM fields are not applied in isolation. Through collaboration, a group must coordinate all knowledge and apply their ideas to a unique problem. This program will help our students understand how to participate as a team on a long-term project with focused deadlines and requirements.

Partner Institutions
Downingtown STEM Academy
Downingtown Area School District

West Pharmaceutical Services, Inc.
Bentley Systems, Inc.
Subaru of America, Inc.SSEP National Partner
NASA Pennsylvania Space Grant Consortium
Litts Quality Technologies (LQT)
Analytical Graphics Inc. (AGI)
Center for the Advancement of Science in Space (CASIS)SSEP National Partner
National Center for Earth and Space Science Education
Trans Lunar Designs
AbsolutData
The SI Organization
Morphotek

SSEP Mission Participation
Mission 4 to ISS

SSEP Community Program Co-Directors
Eric Daney
K-12 Science Curriculum Leader, Downingtown STEM Academy
edaney@dasd.org

Justin Staub
Building Educational Technology Leader, Downingtown STEM Academy
jstaub@dasd.org

 

8. Jamestown, Pennsylvania

Program Scope
Experiment Design Competition: 350 grade 5-12 students given opportunity to participate
Expected Minimum Number of Students Fully Engaged in Experiment Design: 300
Expected Minimum Number of Student Team Proposals: 60

SSEP Community-wide Engagement Program (includes mission patch design): 540 grade K-12 students given opportunity to participate

Number of participating schools: 2; experiment design and mission patches: Jamestown High School and Jamestown Elementary School

Community Statement on SSEP and Strategic Alignment to Local STEM Education Need
The Jamestown Area School District is committed to providing students with the 21st Century Skills that will enable them to be competitive in an ever-expanding global society and marketplace. Through the transition to Common Core Standards and the implementation of STEM-related instruction, our students will possess the following skills needed for future success: the ability to collaborate and communicate effectively with others, the ability to read and follow informational texts, the ability to write technically, responsible and proper utilization of technology, applying mathematical concepts to real-world challenges, and other skills that will serve our students well.

The SSEP will promote the previously mentioned skills and students will apply them in the SSEP format. Students will also learn the importance of working collaboratively to meet deadlines and review and revise their work. Teachers will be able to build closer relationships with students while serving as team supervisors and mentors. A three-day block of time will be scheduled exclusively for SSEP teams to work as real-life scientists would without the interruptions of bell schedules or daily requirements that students face on a regular day. The main goals of our experience with SSEP are to instill pride in our students through their work and eventual experiment proposal, to reinforce 21st Century Skills, and to create a sense of excitement about learning and doing something totally “out of the box” for us as a district.

Partner Institutions
Jamestown High School
Jamestown Area School District

Community Foundation of Western PA and Eastern OH
Center for the Advancement of Science in Space (CASIS)SSEP National Partner
National Center for Earth and Space Science Education
NASA Pennsylvania Space Grant Consortium
Halcón Resources Corporation
ARMSTRONG
Ernst Conservation Seeds
Penn Power – A FirstEnergy Company

SSEP Mission Participation
Mission 4 to ISS

SSEP Community Program Director
Harry Rohrbacher
Biology Teacher, Jamestown High School
harry_rohrbacher@jamestown.k12.pa.us

 

9. North Charleston, South Carolina

Program Scope
Experiment Design Competition: 290 grade 6-10 students given opportunity to participate
Expected Minimum Number of Students Fully Engaged in Experiment Design: 290
Expected Minimum Number of Student Team Proposals: 60

SSEP Community-wide Engagement Program (includes mission patch design): 290 grade 6-10 students given opportunity to participate

Number of participating schools: 1; experiment design and mission patches: Palmetto Scholars Academy

Community Statement on SSEP and Strategic Alignment to Local STEM Education Need
Palmetto Scholars Academy is a charter school serving a gifted and talented population in grades 6-10. Our mission is to serve our student population through a research-based curriculum that provides authentic research experiences. The SSEP gives the school the chance to fulfill its mission statement to the greatest degree in all areas of the curriculum, but particularly in the area of science. The STEM-based approach is in keeping with the mission of the school and can meet the needs of the exceptional child. There is strong commitment from PSA to engage students in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics and provide them with many opportunities in the Charleston area. The research-based curriculum is working to foster that commitment, but the SSEP allows full expression of that commitment. With Google, Boeing, Bosch, ISHPI, and SPAWAR expanding and/or developing in the Charleston area, it is important to expose our students to opportunities that could make an impact on our community. This partnership with STEM leaders in our community enriches the learning environment of our students and energizes these corporations to continue their efforts to make an impact on students’ engagement in STEM.

Partner Institutions
Palmetto Scholars Academy
South Carolina Public Charter School District

Center for the Advancement of Science in Space (CASIS)SSEP National Partner
National Center for Earth and Space Science Education
Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command (SPAWAR)
College of Charleston
Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC)
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
ISHPI

SSEP Mission Participation
Mission 4 to ISS

SSEP Community Program Co-Directors
Marty Hale
Principal, Palmetto Scholars Academy
Martha.Hale@palmettoscholarsacademy.org

Kellye Voigt
Science & Research Teacher, Palmetto Scholars Academy
kellye.voigt@palmettoscholarsacademy.org

 

10. Hays County, Texas

Program Scope
Experiment Design Competition: 455 grade 4-8 students given opportunity to participate
Expected Minimum Number of Students Fully Engaged in Experiment Design: 400
Expected Minimum Number of Student Team Proposals: 80

SSEP Community-wide Engagement Program (includes mission patch design): 2,560 grade K-8 students given opportunity to participate

Number of participating schools: 4; experiment design and mission patches: Carpenter Hill Elementary, Ralph Pfluger Elementary, Dahlstrom Middles School and Wallace Middle School

Community Statement on SSEP and Strategic Alignment to Local STEM Education Need
Hays Consolidated Independent School District is committed to preparing our students for careers in the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields. STEM education has become a main focus of our superintendent, school board and our community. Our goal, as a community, is to inspire, engage and prepare our next generations to be inventors, explorers and innovators who will lead United States innovation in the 21st century. We are one of the only districts in the state of Texas that has implemented a complete, full emersion, STEM magnet at the elementary level. This has lead to classes that extend our STEM ideas into our middle schools with a program called Gateway to Technology. Students are given the opportunity and encouraged to ask, plan, create, engineer, and improve projects and ideas that emphasize independent thinking and reasoning. Our mission is to teach students how to think outside of the normal realm of things.

SSEP will enable our students to experience and participate in authentic scientific experimentation, while enhancing team-building skills. Hays Consolidated ISD follows the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills as well as the state developed C-Scope curriculum.  SSEP will provide students the opportunity to be able to think analytically, work as a team cooperatively, problem solve real-world problems, set personal goals and make use of communication skills. SSEP also provides the opportunity to be a part of a real world experience and create buzz and excitement for not only our learners and teachers, but our entire community.

Partner Institutions
Hays Consolidated Independent School District

Texas Pioneer Foundation
Hays CISD Education Foundation
Center for the Advancement of Science in Space (CASIS)SSEP National Partner
National Center for Earth and Space Science Education
Texas State University San Marcos

SSEP Mission Participation
Mission 4 to ISS

SSEP Community Program Co-Directors
Lori Shultz
5th Grade STEM Teacher, Carpenter Hill Elementary
shultzl@hayscisd.net

Tim Persall
STEM Interim Director, Hays Consolidated Independent School District
Persallt@hayscisd.net

 

11. Pharr, Texas

Program Scope
Experiment Design Competition: 270 grade 4-5 students given opportunity to participate
Expected Minimum Number of Students Fully Engaged in Experiment Design: 270
Expected Minimum Number of Student Team Proposals: 60

SSEP Community-wide Engagement Program (includes mission patch design): 32,000 grade K-12 students given opportunity to participate

Number of participating schools: 40; experiment design and mission patches: Cesar Chavez Elementary School; mission patches only: Elementary Schools: Allen & William Arnold, James Bowie, D. U. Buckner, Arnoldo Cantu, Sr. (NSJ), Edith & Ethel Carman, Vida N. Clover, John Doedyns, Aida C. Escobar (Whitney), Zeferino Farias, Henry Ford, Graciela Garcia, Marcia R. Garza, Amanda Garza-Peña, Augusto Guerra, Dr. William Long, Raul Longoria, Gertrude Napper, North Alamo, Geraldine Palmer, Pharr Elementary, Daniel Ramirez, Drs. Reed & Mock, Alfred Sorensen, South Pharr, Sgt. Leonel Treviño; Middle Schools: Alamo, Austin, Jaime Escalante, Kennedy, LBJ, Liberty, Audie Murphy, San Juan; High Schools: PSJA High, PSJA Memorial, PSJA North, PSJA Southwest, PSJA T. Jefferson ECHS

Community Statement on SSEP and Strategic Alignment to Local STEM Education Need
Cesar Chavez Elementary has dedicated itself to STEM education through its support of Technology Club, Science Club, Annual Science Fair, and Robotics Afterschool Program. Chavez is focused and committed to giving each child a chance to excel early in life. In 2010, Chavez implemented a program that introduced students from 1st grade-5th grade to hands-on science by the way of a primary and upper level science lab. These two science labs have allowed students to experience science and compete in a great deal of competitions, including the Young Engineers at UTPA, where our 2nd graders took 1st place in the Catapult division. Chavez has also implemented summer science camps that focus on integrated technology, math, and science through the NASA Summer of Innovation themed units. These camps have included Rocketry, Cosmic Explorers, and Girls in Science.

Cesar Chavez Elementary school follows a science curriculum that is built around the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills which address the hands-on lab experience and experimental design required for all student’s achievement in science. The community’s participation in the Student Spaceflight Experiments Program Mission 4 to the International Space Station (ISS) will provide a great opportunity for the school district to further pursue its commitment to excellence in STEM education. The involvement in the Student Spaceflight Experiment Program through Mission 4 has excited many in the local community and the school. The SSEP will empower our students to experience genuine scientific experimentation, while taking into account the implications of the engineering process and the authentic, real- life applications of such experiments. SSEP will help teachers to facilitate students to work towards a complete understanding of STEM principles.

Partner Institutions
Cesar Chavez Elementary School
Pharr-San Juan-Alamo Independent School District

Pharr City Council
Center for the Advancement of Science in Space (CASIS)SSEP National Partner
National Center for Earth and Space Science Education
Magic Valley Electric Cooperative

SSEP Mission Participation
Mission 4 to ISS

SSEP Community Program Director
Celena Miller
Science Lab Teacher, Cesar Chavez Elementary School
celena.miller@psjaisd.us

 

The Student Spaceflight Experiments Program (SSEP) is a program of the National Center for Earth and Space Science Education (NCESSE) in the U.S., and the Arthur C. Clarke Institute for Space Education internationally. It is enabled through a strategic partnership with DreamUp PBC and NanoRacks LLC, which are working with NASA under a Space Act Agreement as part of the utilization of the International Space Station as a National Laboratory. SSEP is the first pre-college STEM education program that is both a U.S. national initiative and implemented as an on-orbit commercial space venture.