Project Lead the Way (PLTW) is a national non-profit organization established to help schools prepare students develop the skills needed to succeed in the global economy. Project Lead the Way is the nation’s leading provider of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) programs for use by elementary, middle, and high school. LVJUSD first adopted PLTW curriculum during the 2009-2010 school year starting with PLTW Engineering at Livermore High School with their Green Engineering Academy and has gradually expanded the program pathway to 8 of our 17 schools since that time. Project Lead the Way (PLTW) offers multiple curricular programs. Currently, LVJUSD offers four of these programs, PLTW Launch at the elementary schools, PLTW Gateway at the middle schools, PLTW Computer Science at Granada High School, and PLTW Engineering at both Granada and Livermore High Schools.
PLTW Launch is designed for students in kindergarten through fifth grade to capture their interest in and spark a lifelong passion for math and science. Altamont Creek currently provides the Launch curriculum to all students from first to fifth grades since the 2013-2014 school year. Joining Altamont Creek Elementary for 2015-2016 are Jackson Ave Elementary, providing Launch to their third graders, and Joe Michell K-8 implementing the program for first through fifth grade.
First implemented during the 2011-12 school year, STEM Exploration I was offered as a yearlong elective to seventh and eighth graders at Christensen Middle School and East Avenue Middle School. The program has expanded at both schools during the past few years to offer Gateway units to eighth graders in the elective course STEM Exploration II. Joining Christensen and East this past year are Joe Michell K-8 and Mendenhall Middle School. Mendenhall offers a STEM Exploration I yearlong elective course, open to all seventh and eighth graders while Joe Michell offers a half-year STEM Exploration I to all sixth and seventh graders and half-year STEM Exploration II to eighth graders.
PLTW Engineering curriculum serves as the foundation for engineering courses at both Granada and Livermore and is intended for students in grades nine through twelve. The curriculum creates opportunities for students to explore the design and engineering processes and links STEM principles to relevant problem-solving activities. Livermore High School first implemented PLTW curriculum during the 2009-2010 establishing the Green Engineering Academy (GEA). A small cadre of partner teachers work collaboratively to prepare a cohort of students for their future and college and career through the following related courses; Engineering Physics, Introduction to Engineering Design, Principles of Engineering, Civil Engineering and Architecture, and Engineering Design and Development. Granada High School implemented PLTW Engineering during the 2013-2014 school year.
PLTW Computer Science
Granada High School implemented the PLTW Computer Science pathway during the 2013-2014 school year and was selected to pilot a course called Computer Science and Software Engineering, among approximately 50 teachers nationwide participating in the pilot program. Because the PLTW Computer Science is a new pathway that launched as a pilot pathway in 2013-2014, additional courses are being piloted and being added to this pathway. Granada High has recently been selected to pilot Introduction to Computer Science for the upcoming 2015-2016 school year.