CREATE’s research and evaluation group will be providing evaluation services for the Lemon Grove School District’s Full STEM Ahead Initiative, underway this fall. The $360,000 grant, awarded in July by the Department of Defense, will fund a comprehensive, research-based program for improving STEM education at Vista La Mesa Academy in La Mesa.
The Department of Defense, through its Educational Partnership Grant Program, awarded almost $20 million to public school districts serving military families. Lemon Grove School District was one of only three districts awarded in the state of California.
Larry McClure, Research and Evaluation Coordinator for CREATE and for the CREATE STEM Success Initiative (CSSI), which seeks to leverage UCSD’s resources alongside the education community’s, will oversee the evaluation work for the grant.
“We want to provide external research and evaluation of new and ongoing educational programs and to help educators assess the impact of their work,” McClure said. “CREATE’s evaluation services help schools and districts throughout the region ensure their education initiatives will make a real difference in student learning. We’re especially pleased to have the opportunity to help with K-12 STEM education projects and look forward to working with the Lemon Grove School District on its new grant.”
The Full STEM Ahead Initiative is designed to improve school learning environments at Vista La Mesa Academy in order to increase the percentage of grade 5-8 students who are proficient or advanced in math and science. The grant will fund teacher professional development and collaboration, evidence-based instructional approaches, parent engagement and technology integration. The grant also provides substantial support for professional development and STEM-enriched family activities.
CREATE research and evaluation efforts have included work on grants from The Carnegie Corporation, the Spencer Foundation, the Ford Foundation, the U.S. Department of Education, the National Science Foundation, the Howard Hughes Foundation, the California Subject Matter Project in Science, as well as state agencies and local foundations. CREATE also works to support UCSD students as co-researchers.