Read the comments under any KNS article about education and you will find people complaining about the students who (1) don’t want to be in the class, the students with (2) parents who aren’t engaged in their child’s education and the (3) brightest children being neglected because of the high needs students. After YEARS of mumblings about a school focused only on STEM, Knoxville is finally getting a STEM school. A school that will only have students who (1) want to be there and students with (2) involved parents. The people who are excited about the STEM school are the same people who were disappointed by the TAG program’s absorption into the regular classroom. They are the parents of children who thrived in middle school TSA. These are the students (3) who are waiting for their classmates to catch up with them when they should be moving forward. They are the parents who want their children to have the opportunity to creatively apply the skills they learn instead of memorizing the information for standardized tests.
Knoxville complains endlessly about crowded schools and building new schools in the west. The STEM school will be downtown in an old building that has proven to be a terrible location for restaurants/bars. Knoxville complains about everything. Don’t let Knoxville be known as a scorched Earth community that refuses to plant new ideas and let them grow. A STEM school is a good idea. Making it separate from the existing schools is a great idea.
Knox County Schools create schools, staffs them and zones children to attend. Schools with involved parents and community thrive and grow into something more than a building. A school filled entirely with students who want to be there and supportive parents has limitless potential. A thriving school can and should be part of the downtown renaissance. As someone said on Twitter, “Come for the school. Stay for the dinner, shopping & Sunsphere.”