Kaimuki Middle STEM program could win $1M in national education competition
A STEM program at a local middle school has a chance to win $1 million in a national education competition.
A hui of teachers at Kaimuki Middle School’s Voyager Center entered the Yass Prize “STOP” contest. The competition highlights innovative ways to educate students, especially in a post-pandemic world.
“STOP” stands for “Sustainable, Transformational, Outstanding and Permissionless” — meaning it does not require approval from regulators.
Earlier this week, the competition announced the Oʻahu school advanced into the round of 64, awarding them $100,000.
Lianna Lam, a teacher at Kaimuki Middle and part of the hui, says the award unlocks a world of possibilities for students.
"The funds enable us to get help — additional staffers that are 100% dedicated to this kind of work of hands-on, experiential, meaningful, purposeful learning opportunities where we bridge with external experts or the external community. I feel like we've been able to map some stepping stones on how you can successfully do this kind of learning. But it does come at a toll," Lam told HPR.
Lam says the hui will be participating in an accelerator program to pitch an idea to transform the way students learn.
They will earn another $100,000 if they advance to the round of 32.
Competition organizers will announce a winner on Dec. 14 for the $1 million grand prize.