MaST Community Charter School Named 21st Century Learning Exemplar School by P21
Educators, communities, and students to be featured online in Patterns of Innovation
Philadelphia, PA, December 2, 2014 – The Partnership for 21st Century Skills (P21), the leading organization advocating for 21st century learning for every student, has designated MaST Community Charter School as an exemplar school, as part of a program to highlight exemplary 21st century learning practices that are improving schools and student learning in classrooms and communities across the United States.
Patterns of Innovation: The 21st Century Learning Exemplar Program showcases schools, educators, and students from around the country that have embraced the P21 Framework for 21st Century Learning to increase educational options and outcomes for all students.
Patterns of Innovation shares the experiences of schools that have successfully transformed their students’ learning by incorporating elements of the P21 Framework into teacher practice, curriculum, assessment, and professional development.
The 2015 21st Century Learning Exemplars, including MaST Community Charter School were selected along with 14 schools through a rigorous application process, and evaluated for educational excellence and 21st century learning implementation. The schools are part of P21’s ongoing initiative to identify, document, and showcase exemplary 21st century learning in action.
John Swoyer, CEO of MaST comments, “MaST has focused its model of learning on STREAM education, which infuses Science, Technology, Robotics, Engineering, Arts, and Math into all approaches of the curriculum and learning environments. We have made efforts to think about innovation and 21st century learning in everything we do at MaST which includes our latest venture, a Makerspace, for engineering, robotics, 3D, and technology courses. Our Board of Trustees, administration, teachers, students, and parents have embraced the learning approach and have become the drivers of new programs and approaches to learning. Our teachers are innovative, inspirational, and role models for our MaST students matching the vision of MaST and P21. They are the key to the success of our children day in and day out and this recognition is a tribute to them.”
“We are very proud to continue sharing the Patterns of Innovation to highlight strong learning communities, leadership, and the importance of student voice,” said Dr. Helen Soulé, P21 Executive Director. “P21 is working with our many members and partners to make 21st century learning a reality for schools and students everywhere, regardless of zipcode, because every student deserves an exemplar school.”
Case studies on schools just announced, including MaST Community Charter School are currently in development and will be unveiled in early 2015. All schools are encouraged to apply to be considered for the 2016 round. Applications will open December 10, 2014.
MaST Community Charter School currently runs a K-12 charter school that serves 1318 students. Its current Board President, Mrs. Karen DelGuercio, founded the school in 1999. MaST was one of the first charter schools in Philadelphia and has grown into one of the most successful schools in the state. MaST was the top K-12 charter last year and currently has a waitlist of over 5,600 students. It has recently applied for 2 additional schools in Philadelphia and is waiting on the approval of the Philadelphia School District to replicate the MaST model. Over the past 15 years, MaST has transformed quite a bit, but has stayed true to its core mission and vision to create innovative pathways for students pursuing knowledge focused on Mathematics, Science, and Technology.
MaST’s unique STREAM model allows an in-depth look at Science, Technology, Robotics, Engineering, Art, and Math. STREAM provides students with hands-on and creative activities/lessons in order to prepare students for future careers. MaST incorporates elements of the STREAM curriculum in all levels K-12. A few components of MaST’s STREAM model include a K-12 robotics program, high school 3D product design, science observation and experiments in the Outdoor Garden, “shark tank” demonstrations in the Video Studio, and one to one iPad programs in multiple grade levels. Through STREAM, students learn vital 21st century skills such as problem solving, critical thinking, collaboration, and innovation along with essential technology skill sets.