Program offers awards for student participation in AP math, science, and English courses to improve career readiness for national security jobs
WHERE: Oakleaf High School
4035 Plantation Oaks Blvd.
Orange Park, FL 32065
WHEN: Thursday, Oct. 20
10:30 am – 11:45 am
NMSI’s College Readiness Program has a proven track record of dramatically increasing the number of students taking and earning qualifying scores on Advanced Placement math, science, and English exams while expanding access to rigorous coursework to traditionally underrepresented students.
“AP courses are one of the most powerful tools that we can offer students to prepare them for college and career. AP courses also provide the continuity our military connected students need as they transition to new school districts and military installations,” said Dawn Kaunike, NMSI’s Florida program manager.
By preparing students for STEM-intensive careers, NMSI also aims to increase the number of students equipped to join fields that are essential to national security. In 2011, NMSI became one of the first organizations to partner with Joining Forces, an initiative launched by First Lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden which calls all Americans to rally around service members, veterans, and their families to support them through wellness, education, and employment opportunities, and subsequently began extending NMSI’s College Readiness Program to 200 military-connected schools across the country, including each of Clay County’s high schools.
“The National Math and Science Initiative is benefitting school children all over the nation, and I am delighted to see this event being held in Clay County this year, where so many of our military children attend school,” said NAS Jacksonville Commanding Officer Capt. Sean Haley.
Clay County was one of three Florida districts invited to participate in the three-year program beginning in the 2016-2017 school year, based on the high number of military-connected families it serves and successful applications for previous Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA) grants. Since 2011, the School District of Clay County has been awarded over $6 million in DoDEA grants to improve outcomes for military-connected students in STEM and to provide support for transitioning students.
“The National Math and Science Initiative is in perfect alignment with our district’s priorities of increasing student achievement in STEM fields and supporting the military-connected families in our community,” said Charlie Van Zant, Clay County’s superintendent of schools. “We are honored to be selected for the College Readiness Program and make this world-class educational opportunity available to our teachers and students.”
As part of the College Readiness Program, NMSI provides support for teachers including teacher training, mentors, online resources, equipment and supplies, and stipend and awards. Support for students includes Saturday study sessions taught by experts in the field, and a cash award of $100 for any qualifying score of 3 or higher on an AP math, science, computer science, or English exam.
"NMSI is the best professional development experience I have had during my eight years as a classroom teacher. The resources, incentives, and trainings they provide to teachers and students are unmatched in comparison to other similar organizations," said John Gwynes, an AP Statistics teacher at Oakleaf High School.