The Precedent

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STEM Scholars looking for distinction at graduation

Students in STEM are looking for distinction at graduation.

Students in STEM are looking for distinction at graduation.

Perry High School

Perry High School

Students in STEM are looking for distinction at graduation.


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Freshman year, Science Technology Engineering and Math (STEM) program participants were told that there was a difference between STEM Diploma and STEM Scholar. Diploma requires you to take only two higher level core classes, science and math. Scholar requires you to take four or more higher level core classes.

But as graduation comes barreling around the corner for STEM seniors, they have found out some news that came as a shock to many: there is no distinction at graduation between the two levels of the program at graduation. But Scholars have began a small movement to change this fact.

Angela Gardner, the Government and Politics teacher for on-level and Advanced Placement (AP), says, “they want to be distinguished at graduation by having something embroidered on their hoods.” She continues, “because there is a huge difference in the class load, the workload, and everything, between stem scholar and diploma.”

The Scholars went to Joe Greene, the Assistant Principal, and gave him the overview of what they were trying to advocate, but were denied. The students explain that he said that not only was it too late in the year to get it changed, but he did not see a clear distinction between the two levels of the program.

Hunter Privett, a senior Scholar, says, “the programs, though they are both under the umbrella of STEM, they entail different workloads and different classes. I feel that if you are doing a different workload, you should be recognized for doing more work.”

These Scholar students have been in the STEM program since freshman year and are required to take AP tests for all AP classes, which Diplomas have to do as well, but they only have to take two AP tests, not four or more.

Senior Scholar Kiera Fleck says, “there are different requirements for the two [levels of] programs. Since they are different, they should receive different recognition.”

The top five percent students in the 2018 senior class are all Scholars, Privett and Fleck being in the top five students of the senior class. Although the students know they will not be able to get recognition this year due to it being too late in the year, they are hoping that next year there will be a distinction between Scholars and Diplomas.


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STEM Scholars looking for distinction at graduation