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School Funding Supports STEM Curriculum Development

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Lockheed Martin Space Systems
: 24 May, 2010  (Company News)
Lockheed Martin is sinking funds into a Denver school for the development of the curriculum to support Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics
Lockheed Martin has pledged to donate $1 million to the Denver School of Science and Technology (DSST), an open-enrolment public school serving middle and high school students in Denver, Colorado. The grant will help fund DSSTís Vision 2020 plan to expand DSSTís community school model into four additional sixth-12th-grade schools in the Denver area by 2020. The funding will support the development and expansion of the schoolís science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) curriculum.

Additionally, the school is making use of Lockheed Martinís pledge to pursue a $5 million Investing in Innovation (i3) grant from the Department of Education provided through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

Lockheed Martinís $1 million donation was announced at DSSTís flagship campus by Joanne Maguire, executive vice president of Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company. Maguire also pledged a five-year commitment of volunteer support from the companyís 4,300 Colorado-based employees; half of whom are engineers or scientists.

ďWe recognize and are encouraged by DSSTís record of achievement and are excited to be able to help support the schoolís expansion efforts to reach more students. Simply put, DSST is delivering results, said Maguire. ďIn just six short years the school has become nationally recognized for measurable results and significantly improved student performance, becoming one of the leading open-enrolment STEM focus schools in the nation. The DSST school model is an example of how our public school system, can successfully engage students, demonstrate a commitment to diversity, and help solidify our nationís continued technology leadership.Ē

Lockheed Martin has partnered with DSST since the school was founded by supporting student and teacher internships and extracurricular activities, and providing hands-on opportunities for its students.

ďWe are honoured to receive this significant financial investment from Lockheed Martin. Its support as a corporate partner since DSSTís inception has been critical in helping us prepare students for careers in STEM fields,Ē said Bill Kurtz, CEO of DSST Public Schools. ďLockheed Martinís forward-thinking approach is helping to address our countryís shortage of scientists and engineers which in turn will help the US to remain competitive in our new, global economy.Ē

More than 50 percent of Lockheed Martinís philanthropic giving is directed towards kindergarten through college STEM education efforts. In 2009, Lockheed Martin dedicated more than $24 million to programs supporting STEM education, community service, and military support.

DSST Public Schools operates open-enrolment STEM charter schools and is part of the Denver Public Schools (DPS) system. DSST Public Schools has been approved to open four additional secondary schools (grades 6-12) with its second campus at Green Valley Ranch scheduled to open in August. At full enrolment, DSST Public Schools will serve over 4,200 students, and will double the number of four year college-ready DPS graduates by 2020. DSST Public Schools was founded as the Denver School of Science and Technology in 2004 with the founding campus at Stapleton. DSST Stapleton serves students from all parts of Denver.

DSST Stapleton is widely considered to be one of the leading open enrolment STEM schools in the nation and has become a destination for educators nationwide. DSST Stapleton has consistently been one of the top performing secondary schools in DPS. For the three school years 2006-2009, DSST students had the highest median student growth in the state of Colorado. DSST Stapletonís first three graduating classes earned 100 percent acceptances into four-year colleges. Fifty percent of DSSTís 2010 graduating class is first generation college-bound.
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