Niagara Gazette — Filling the gap will keep people here and keep businesses here.
"Each of our 45 teachers will go through this program," he said. "They'll take the information and pass it on to their students. Now, you have the students. And you have to think each of them has at least two friends. And each of those friends has to have at least two friends.
"Our future is these students. The next innovator, the next big thinker, the next developer might be one of these children in school now and we'll lose them without this instruction. We'll lose them and we won't even know we've lost them. We need to push thinking. That's what innovation is all about."
Why in Niagara Falls? Last year, the district announced it would build a STEM laboratory in each of its school buildings — two in the high school — as part of its $67 million Inventing Tomorrow capital project.
It's a major shift in education approach from the past, even statewide, Falls Superintendent Cynthia Bianco said.
"When we started petitioning the state for funding for our project, they said 'STEM? What's STEM?'" she said. "Now they're calling us, looking to us because it's the new approach.
"Students in our district, especially, tend to be more poor, are more likely to continue the cycle of poverty. With STEM, you're giving them a chance to do something more."
"As our teachers will say, we're on the verge of something different here," added Lynne Tompkins, administrator at the high school and STEM coordinator district-wide. "The lessons are going to be highly exciting as the students deal with more hands-on math science and technology instruction."Contact reporter Timothy Chipp at 282-2311, ext. 2251 or follow on Twitter @timchipp.