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Alarming Notes:

a.       NATIONAL SECURITY deficit: this year alone, the US will be short 500,000 engineers. The problem lies within employment criteria. Only US citizens can be employed by US Department of Defense.

b.      In 2010 top 10 jobs did not exist 10 years ago. What does this mean: societal employment needs are based on innovation and development.

c.       Business and industry needs there to be a graduation rate of 33% in STEM related fields, currently only 17% of graduates are in STEM.

d.      Businesses are looking for potential employees to fill openings in STEM but qualified people just are not there. (STEM III Summit)


So what is Madison County going to do about these statistics? A team of 5 teachers and administrators from our district will be traveling to Hillsborough County to visit three premier secondary schools which are currently operating very robust Engineering programs of study beginning at the middle school level. Our intent is to bring back ideas that will allow CTE program expansion in our district.


Madison County Central and Madison County High School is embarking on a new adventure with Career and Technical Education. Both schools are anticipation the creation of an Engineering Pathway beginning with the sixth grade. Engineering occupations are expected to continue on the upward swing for the upcoming years. Engineering is extremely critical to America’s future at home and abroad. Nationwide Engineering occupations create or enhance: economic growth, creation of new jobs, quality of life, and national security.

In Florida alone, job growth is expecting to see 411,000 new or additional STEM related jobs that need filling by the year 2018 (Florida’s K-12 STEM Ed Report Card 2011). Engineering occupations are expected to continue to grow over the next 10 years; however, the growth seen will be driven by the specialty.

Our district intends to provide well-rounded exposure to a variety of Engineering career fields at the middle school level; then as the student transitions to high school, offer more specialized opportunities.

Let’s take a look at what is on the horizon for our middle school students.


Students at MCCS will be able to begin studies in “Integrated Technology Studies” program. This particular program will create opportunities for middle school students to be exposed to 6 semester long courses designed to provide students with a foundation of knowledge and technically oriented experiences in the study of the applications of technology and its effect upon our lives and the choosing of an occupation. The emphasis of this program is on developing awareness of future needs, developing technological competence, confidence and awareness through interaction with technologies, and the development of awareness in other career programs. Most importantly, the content includes introductory studies in areas of technology which introduce students to the development of abilities to calculate, make important observations, analyze and solve problems using manipulative skills while working cooperatively with others in team activities. Each course listed below will give the student the opportunity to be introduced and explore career fields within technology while allowing the student to gain a thorough understanding of the effects of each field.


1.      Introduction to Technology

2.      Exploring Technology

3.      Explorations in Communication Technology

4.      Explorations in Production Technology

5.      Explorations of Aerospace Technology

6.      Explorations of Transportation Technology.


Students who complete this program shall be able to:

01.0          Demonstrate an understanding of the characteristics and scope of technology.

02.0          Demonstrate an understanding of the cultural, social, economic, and political effects of technology.

03.0          Demonstrate an understanding of engineering design.

04.0          Demonstrate an understanding of the role of troubleshooting, research and development, invention and innovation, and experimentation in problem solving.

05.0          Demonstrate an understanding of and be able to select and use medical technologies.

06.0          Demonstrate an understanding of and be able to select and use agricultural and related biotechnologies.

07.0          Demonstrate an understanding of and be able to select and use energy and power technologies.

08.0          Demonstrate an understanding of and be able to select and use information and communications technologies.

09.0          Demonstrate an understanding of and be able to select and use manufacturing technologies.

10.0          Demonstrate knowledge of the basic principles of aerostatics and aerodynamics.

11.0          Identify and demonstrate knowledge of both liquid and solid propellant rocket propulsion systems.

12.0          Define and describe the stages and forms of interference in basic satellite communication systems.

13.0          Perform special skills unique to transportation technologies.

14.0          Express knowledge of the industries that deal with transportation technology.


This is just a sample of the standards our 6th-8th grade students will be exposed. These same students will be able to continue with studies in Applied Engineering Technology at the high school level.