Wake County Schools Superintendent Tony Tata will attempt to turn the focus today to the school district's STEM (Science Technology Engineering and Math) program.
Tata is holding his weekly press briefing this morning at Southeast Raleigh High School, where it's expected that most of the questions from the media will be about the new student assignment plan and Peace University backing out of the leadership academies. But Tata is holding the event at Southeast Raleigh to highlight Saturday's first ever countywide STEM expo.
After the press conference, school administrators are encouraging reporters to remain at the school "for interviews and video/photo opportunities of STEM programs at work in the classroom."
Tata has expanded the STEM program since he became superintendent. This week, he announced that four more schools will be added for the 2012-13 school year.
During Saturday's expo at Southeast Raleigh, parents and students will learn more about STEM opportunities that connect students with the skills and knowledge to be college- and career-ready.
The new STEM programs were announced a few days before the close of round two of the school selection process.
Yevonne Brannon, chairwoman of the Great Schools in Wake Coalition, questioned the district's ability to sufficiently train teachers in the STEM model to have it ready at the new schools this fall.
"Parents aren't going be fooled by adding a new program," Brannon said. "All they're going to create is a program with a label slapped on it."