At the Lynn School Committee meeting on December 8th, Superintendent Latham described the new Innovation School set to open at the Washington Elementary School in September 2012 (the formal presentation by Julie Ierardi was cancelled last minute). Latham stated that the Innovation school would have a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) focus/theme with partnerships with GE, MIT and Gordon College opening with just grades K-3 to start. The reason behind this, according to Latham, is that 4th and 5th graders are probably well integrated into their current schools and the overcrowding problem is mostly concentrated in the lower grades. Thus, the goal in opening the Innovation school really is to reduce the overcrowding issue. As the presentation regarding the school did not occur as previously scheduled, there were many questions left unanswered.
- Who will be running the new school? How will teachers for this school be hired?
- What does a STEM focused school at the elementary school level look like? What exactly will the curriculum be?
- How will the curriculum at the school differ or be similar to that of the other Lynn Public elementary schools?
- How will students be assigned to this school?
- Will there be an enrollment/class size cap?
- What if students in this new school's zone/district want to remain at their current school or have a sibling in the 4th or 5th grade?
- Will students outside the preferred school zone which appears to be Cobbett/Connery/Harrington be allowed to transfer in?
- Will the school run on a longer school day/year similar to the Paul Revere Innovation School?
Only time will tell what form the Washington Innovation School (will it called that?) will actually take.