ORANGE, CALIF. — September 25, 2015 — Orange Unified School District is proud to announce the opening of three additional STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) labs at the secondary level. The new STEM labs, located at Villa Park High School (VPHS), Portola Middle School and Yorba Middle School, provide students with the opportunity to experience real-world situations that will bring them closer to college and career readiness as they think through and solve problems in a project-based scenario. The STEM labs contain stations specifically equipped with hardware and software tools and instructional materials that will allow students to learn new technologies and explore career pathways in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.
The VPHS STEM lab utilizes CAREERplus, which provides 20 days of high-energy multimedia instruction with four students participating in each Integrated Instructional Unit (IIU). The content is delivered by customizable interactive multimedia stations. All IIUs are closed-captioned with a heavy emphasis on the inter-relationship of science, math, engineering and technology. The CAREERplus Integrated Instructional Units are aligned to the Common Career Technical Core and support the Next Generation Science Standards implementation.
Currently, 97 students utilize the STEM lab at Villa Park High. As part of the program, the following instructional stations are offered: Architectural Design, Construction Technology, Environmental Technology, Alternative Energy, Robotics, Manufacturing, Communications, and Material Science. Principal Ed Howard stated, “The VPHS STEM lab has created an opportunity for our students to explore an entry-level look into 21st century career opportunities. This survey course is an excellent continuation of the program many students are familiar with from Cerro Villa, our feeder middle school. The STEM lab fits in with two of our key goals at VPHS: to prepare our students for what is next and to provide them with a worthwhile experience while attending Villa Park High School.”
Cerro Villa Middle School’s STEM lab was opened in April 2015. Portola Middle School and Yorba Middle School opened their STEM labs at the beginning of this school year. Each middle school STEM lab utilizes the Paxton ActionLABS program, which offers ten days of instruction in each of the 22 Integrated Instructional Units. The program delivers a contemporary curriculum of technological content and scientific inquiry through the balanced use of multimedia, video and hands-on activities. The middle school labs offer students the following instructional stations: Alternative Energy; Computer Aided Drafting (CAD); Computer Graphics and Animation; Digital Manufacturing; Digital Music; Electricity; Energy & Power; Flight Technology; Forensic Science; Laser Technology; Materials Processing; Mechanisms; Pneumatics; Research & Development; Robotics; and Structural Engineering.
For more information about Career Technical Education opportunities for students in Orange Unified, please visit /CTE/