Regional Development Australia Central West (RDA CW) has welcomed the STEM Industry School Partnerships Program being recognised with a state wide award through the 2019 NSW Minister’s and Secretary’s Awards for Excellence.
The STEM Industry School Partnerships (SISP) Program, partners schools with local industry, inspiring students to study Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) subjects, preparing them to meet the job needs of regional workforce.
Through this innovative program three learning communities (Cessnock, Canobolas and Crookwell) were provided with an embedded STEM Project Officer who worked closely alongside Regional Development Australia to facilitate contextualised, job-specific STEM learning activities for students and teacher professional development to improve their expert STEM knowledge.
The reach of the 2018 pilot included three high schools, 17 primary schools, approximately 2,200 students and 18 industry and community partners.
As part of the SISP program, the Central West has been at the forefront of this program with Canobolas Academy of STEM Excellence (CASE) being established to support the teachers and students of the Canobolas Rural Technology High School learning community, in partnership with Regional Development Australia Central West.
RDA Central West CEO Sam Harma said the award was recognition of all the hard work put in by staff, students and key industry supporters.
“STEM is a vital area of study, and will be the cornerstone of education in the future across the Central West. RDA is proud to partner with the Department of Education and our generous industry partners to deliver this great program”
“We have focused on transport and logistics this year because we know this is a vital sector of the local economy reliant on STEM skills. There is an abundance of local job opportunities in our region for students in this sector, and STEM plays an important role,” said Mr Harma.
“Showing students firsthand how vital STEM skills are to local industry and the local economy shows them that there are jobs, careers and a bright future thanks to STEM skills right here across the Central West”.
The success of the CASE initiatives in the Central West was a key contribution to SISP achieving this prestigious award. This is the second Secretary’s Award for Excellence for Canobolas Rural Technology High School, previously winning the Secretary’s Commendation for an Outstanding School Initiative for its STEM curriculum program in 2016.