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JMCSS receives a $40,000 grant to bring STEM education into middle schools

The Jackson Madison County School System has career and technical education (CTE) programs and the local options and opportunities (L.O.O.P) program giving high school students a look at various jobs, but now they are introducing students to those same opportunities at an earlier age.

“Science, technology, engineering and math and that is actually an area we are trying to focus on", says CTE Director for the district, Nathan Lewis.

JMCSS received a $40,000 grant from Governor Bill Lee’s Future Workforce Initiative.

This grant funds science, technology, engineering, and math education better known as STEM for middle school students.

“We want to increase the students taking our programs of CTE in high school, but the way that we do that is to expose them in middle school", adds Lewis.

The grant will go to 4 middle schools in the district, $10,000 for each school.

North Parkway, Northeast, West Bemis, and Jackson Career and Technology.

The grant will help purchase 3-D printers and stem kits.

“Some of them will be hydroponics where they are actually growing vegetables and other things and water and that’s a pretty neat system. Some of them will be robotics kits, so each school will get to choose the kits that they purchase", says the director.

The district hopes this early exposure to STEM career opportunities will give students options to look forward to once the time comes for them to pick high school courses.

The grant will also help pay for STEM training for teachers and possible trips to local manufactures or businesses in Jackson.

For 39 News, I'm Imani Williams, in Jackson.

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