Citizen Schools has been awarded a $2M grant from the Biogen Foundation as part of the foundation's recently announced STAR Initiative. As 1 of 6 recipients of the STAR (Science, Teacher Support, Access and Readiness) Initiative, Citizen Schools will expand its signature apprenticeship program to provide hands-on STEM courses, taught by experts, to thousands of middle school students in the Somerville district, and to support classroom teacher instruction during the school day.
In the spring of 2011, Jose Melo, a fifth grader at the Dever McCormack School in Dorchester, MA, took his first apprenticeships with Citizen Schools: It’s All About Gummy Bears and Bootstrap. In the midst of learning the science behind what makes gummy bears gummy and what it takes to program a video game, he discovered an appetite for science and math. By the time he graduated from eighth grade three years later, Jose had completed a total of twelve apprenticeships through Citizen Schools - all of which had a focus on STEM.