Texas Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (T-STEM) Academies are rigorous secondary schools focusing on improving instruction and academic performance in science and mathematics-related subjects and increasing the number of students who study and enter STEM careers. T-STEM Academies are demonstration schools and learning labs that develop innovative methods to improve science and mathematics instructions.
Prior to the 2011-2012 school year, the only path to become a T-STEM Academy was a T-STEM Academy grant through the Texas Education Agency or one of the private partners in the Texas High School Project.
Beginning with the 2011-2012 school year, a second pathway was created. Campuses, using local or other sources of funding, that are implementing the T-STEM Design Blueprint with fidelity may apply to be designated as a T-STEM Academy. T-STEM campuses are designated based on a rigorous designation process. Once a campus is designated, professional development and technical assistance are provided to designated T-STEM academies to serve as demonstration schools and learning labs to showcase innovative instruction methods which integrate technology and engineering into science and mathematics instruction. Designated T-STEM campuses serve students in grades 6-12 or 9-12.
Proven Dropout Prevention Strategies
The Texas Education Agency (TEA) focuses state and federal resources on identifying and replicating proven strategies for dropout prevention and recovery. T-STEM Academies encourage rigorous and relevant instruction to better engage students in learning academic and social skills necessary to complete high school and to prepare them for postsecondary success.
School districts or open-enrollment charters may apply for a campus to be awarded T-STEM designation if certain criteria are met. Campuses awarded T-STEM designation are provided technical assistance and professional development to ensure implementation of the T-STEM Blueprint with fidelity. Sample designation criteria are below:
- Target and enroll students who are at-risk of dropping out of school
- Be a school of choice with no requirements for enrollment such as test scores, essay questions, etc.
- Serve grades 6-12 or grades 9-12 with an active relationship with the feeder middle school(s)
- Implement the T-STEM Blueprint and demonstrate progress on the Blueprint continuum.
Operating T-STEM Academies: 65 (five of which are T-STEM/ECHS blended models)
- 26 campuses grades 9-12
- 39 campuses grades 6-12
Over 35,000 students served
- School-within-school (SwS)
- Stand Alone Models
T-STEM Blueprint Benchmarks:
- Mission-driven leadership
- T-STEM Culture
- Student Outreach, Recruitment, and Retention
- Teacher Selection, Development, and Retention
- Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment
- Strategic Alliances
- Academy Advancement and Sustainability
- 9th grade T-STEM students had higher likelihoods of passing Algebra I than peers in comparison schools
- 10th grade T-STEM students scored higher than comparison students in TAKS Math and had higher likelihoods of meeting or exceeding TAKS standards in all subjects
- T-STEM students had a higher attendance rate than those in comparison schools
- 2012-2013 biennium Texas Education Agency (state funds) $1,730,000
- 2008-2011 biennia Texas Education Agency (state funds) 32 Operating Academies - $23,583,456
- Communities Foundation of Texas Funding (FY 2008-2010) 19 Operating Academies - $15,410,949
- Prior to 2008-2009 biennium (state funds) $13,890,873
T-STEM Academies Grantees and Funding
Federal & State Education Policy
1701 N. Congress Ave.
Austin, TX 78701