District's secondary schools named Distinguished Schools by PLTW

posted Mar 14, 2019, 8:11 AM by Granger Meador   [ updated Mar 14, 2019, 11:22 AM ]

The outstanding STEM programs at all three of the Bartlesville school district's secondary schools as well as Tri-County Tech have earned each of the schools Distinguished School status with Project Lead the Way

Bartlesville High School (BHS) is the only comprehensive high school in Oklahoma to be named a PLTW Distinguished High School. The four other state schools to receive that honor are all CareerTech centers: Tri-County Tech in Bartlesville and technology centers in Drumright, Norman, and Stillwater.

Both Central and Madison Middle Schools were again named Distinguished Schools for 2018-19 in the PLTW Gateway to Technology program. They earned the same distinction in 2017-18 and were two of only four state middle schools to receive the honor for 2018-19. The other state schools earning the recognition are a private school in Lawton and Blackwell Middle School.

Computer Science at BHS
The high school's Computer Science program earned Distinguished School status because:
  • it offers at least three PLTW courses: BHS has four PLTW Computer Science courses
  • of the students who participate in PLTW Computer Science, at least 33% took two or more PLTW courses during their high school tenure
  • 70% or more of students earned a Proficient or higher on PLTW End-of-Course Assessments in Computer Science
Jeremy Hanks teaches Computer Science Essentials, AP Computer Science Principles, AP Computer Science A, and is piloting a Cybersecurity course for PLTW at BHS. Josh Wolfe also teaches Computer Science Essentials at BHS.

Pre-Engineering at BHS and Tri-County Tech
In partnership with Tri-County Tech, Bartlesville High School also offers two Pre-Engineering courses in its Phillips 66 Innovation Labs, taught by BHS teacher David Ayres. His students then have the option of taking additional courses in that field at Tri-County Tech.

Advanced Math Applications and Science Research
Bartlesville High School also offers STEM courses outside of PLTW. Advanced Math Applications is currently taught by Warren Neff, who was a State Teacher of the Year Finalist. Betty Henderson, another State Teacher of the Year Finalist and member of the State Science Fair Hall of Fame, offers a Science Research course at BHS available to juniors and seniors.

Middle School Gateway to Technology Programs
For two consecutive years, both Central and Madison middle schools have been named PLTW Distinguished Schools because they:
  • offer PLTW Gateway units at 6th, 7th, and 8th grades
  • have at least 50% of the student body participating
  • have at least 25% of the students advancing to high school participate in two or more units during their middle school tenure
Rachel Hough and Shannon McKinney teach the PLTW Gateway STEM courses at Madison Middle School. Shannon is a PLTW Master Teacher and also chairs the district's STEM department. Darin Messerli and Lolly Williams teach the PLTW Gateway STEM courses at Central Middle School, and Central hosted a robotics tournament this year. Students at Madison and Central take their Gateway courses in the Phillips 66 Innovation Labs at each middle school.

Elementary School STEM Program
All of the students in kindergarten through fifth grade at each of the district's six elementary schools are completing two PLTW Launch STEM modules this year: one in computer science and another in biomedicine or engineering. The Bartlesville Public Schools Foundation, in conjunction with ConocoPhillips, ABB, and other sponsors, has funded the elementary STEM program. The Foundation is currently raising a final $100,000 in funds to provide two more modules for all kindergarten through fifth-grade classrooms to be implemented in 2019-20 and 2020-21, focused on engineering topics. 

Over 4,000 of the almost 6,000 students in the Bartlesville Public Schools are completing specialized STEM modules or courses in addition to the traditional subjects in science and math. The district's strong performance in STEM is why Project Lead the Way asked it to host a PLTW Showcase for 80 state school leaders in February. 

The Project Lead the Way programs help students develop STEM knowledge along with in-demand, transportable skills they will use for a lifetime on any career path they pursue. The middle school PLTW Gateway programs empower students to lead their own discovery and uncover a range of paths and possibilities they can pursue in high school and beyond.
PLTW Distinguished School Badges