Meridian considers joining New Tech

SANFORD, Mich. — Meridian Public Schools is considering joining the New Tech Network and implementing a project-based approach to high school education that is heavy on technology, according to the Midland Daily News.

Meridian High School would join six other Michigan schools in the California-based network, which emphasizes science, technology, engineering and math education, the Daily News reported.

Becoming a New Tech school requires a $450,000 franchise fee, paid over four years, as well as the cost to purchase any needed technology or make facility improvements, according to the Daily News. There also is a one-year training requirement.

Retiring Superintendent Doug Fillmore told school board members at a recent meeting that the nearby Dow Chemical Co., and other local businesses and organizations may offer support, the Daily News reported.

Staffing issues, potential loss of students and potential opposition to the new approach all would have to be weighed as well, according to the Daily News.

"We have an opportunity to be a leader and to create our niche," trustee Joe Lawson said.

Midland Daily News, “Focus on technology: Meridian board considers revamping education philosophy,” June 14, 2011

Michigan Education Report, “Project ReImagine Taking Shape in N.I.C.E: Online and project-based learning key elements,” July 16, 2010