South Park Elementary receives national recognition

Published 4:00 am Monday, August 2, 2021

South Park Elementary School has been recognized as a 2020-21 Project Lead The Way Distinguished School, one of 310 schools across the U.S. to receive this honor for providing broad access to transformative learning opportunities for students through PLTW Launch, according to information from Project Lead the Way.

PLTW is a nonprofit organization that serves millions of PreK-12 students and teachers in schools across the U.S. 

“PLTW is great because it allows all students the opportunity to see what careers are available to them,” said South Park principal Dr. LaToya Sims-Allen. “It also allows girls to see that science and math are fun and interesting. 

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“I’ve seen more girls and minority students interested in robotics and engineering because we have PLTW.  Our students are able to make more connections in other subject areas because of the different modules in PLTW.” 

The PLTW Distinguished School recognition honors schools committed to increasing student access, engagement and achievement in their PLTW programs. To be eligible for the designation, South Park had to have more than 75 percent of its student body participating in the program and had to offer at least two PLTW launch modules at each grade level during the 2019-20 school year. 

“The leadership team and staff continue to press forward with increased rigor and relevance that fuels their students’ consistent progress,” Vicksburg Warren Superintendent of Schools Chad Shealy said. “I could not be more proud of them.

“We are so thankful for this recognition that designates South Park as a national exemplar from Project Lead the Way. They are laying the foundation for our South Park Bulldogs to be college, career and life prepared.” 

Studies show students decide as early as elementary school whether they like and think they are good at math and science. PLTW launch students engage in critical and creative thinking, build teamwork skills and develop a passion for and confidence in STEM subjects.

“It is a great honor to recognize South Park Elementary School for their unwavering commitment to provide students with an excellent educational experience despite the unusual circumstances and unique challenges that the COVID-19 pandemic presented to the educational landscape this past year,” said Dr. Vince Bertram, president and CEO of PLTW.

“They (the faculty) should be very proud of their achievements in unlocking their students’ potential and equipping them with the knowledge and skills necessary to thrive in life beyond the classroom no matter what career path they choose.”

About John Surratt

John Surratt is a graduate of Louisiana State University with a degree in general studies. He has worked as an editor, reporter and photographer for newspapers in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. He has been a member of The Vicksburg Post staff since 2011 and covers city government. He and his wife attend St. Paul Catholic Church and he is a member of the Port City Kiwanis Club.

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