The UTPB STEM is an innovative public, open-enrollment charter school currently located on the UTPB campus in Odessa, Texas. The charter was approved by TEA for a total of 3,900 students in its service area of Ector and Midland counties.
The Academy started with K-6 in 2014 and will add one grade level each year with the intent to erase the transition barriers between high school and post-secondary education and to prepare college and career ready students.
Other school campuses will be added as funds are available until the maximum enrollment of 3,900 is reached within the two counties.
The UTPB STEM Academy is dedicated to implementing the newest and most promising practices in education with an emphasis in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). The foundational belief is that learning should be both engaging and social.
Students work collaboratively on challenging curriculum, which in turn, enable them to experience engaging learning opportunities in order to develop conceptual knowledge and depth through project-based learning (PBL). Research provides evidence that this type of engaged problem-solving results in a better understanding of concepts and improves cognitive development at all ages.
Students learn 21st century skills like communication, research and collaboration, and problem solving which are deeply embedded into the PBL environment of the Academy. Teachers work together to design projects lasting usually 3-4 weeks.
The projects are designed using the state standards, TEKS and CCRS, which provide students the opportunity to not only learn the information required at each grade level but to also can put the information into action through real-life simulated projects.