RACINE — While Wind Point Elementary School could close under a new Racine Unified plan yet to be approved by the School Board, other schools could see upgrades to their programming.
As part of the plan presented last week, Superintendent Ann Laing and a committee made up of district and community members have recommended expanding Unified’s International Baccalaureate programming. IB is an internationally-recognized curriculum that focuses on global issues, critical thinking and more advanced coursework.
It already exists at Jefferson Lighthouse Elementary School, McKinley Middle School and Case High School — though only for juniors and seniors.
Laing and the committee would expand the program to include Case freshmen and sophomores. They’d also start IB programming at one more middle school and two more elementaries. So far West Ridge Elementary School has expressed interest, Laing said.
Aside from the IB recommendations, there are also recommendations for science, technology, engineering and math programming, or STEM, and for science, technology, engineering, art and math programming, or STEAM.
Red Apple Elementary School, Goodland Elementary School and Mitchell Middle School would like to implement STEAM and Starbuck Middle School wants to start STEM, according to Unified.
These various programs would be implemented over the next two years, Laing said.
The funding for the IB changes has not been nailed down, she said, but for the STEM and STEAM changes money has already been set aside or awarded.
Middle school science lab upgrades were included in this year’s budget and the district has received a $995,000 grant to train teachers, Laing said. Additional training may also be added into the district’s annual staff data retreat, she added.
The School Board will likely vote on the changes at their Dec. 17 meeting, Laing said.