After 125 years of excellence, Immaculate Conception School remains at the leading edge of Catholic education! Starting in 2011, the Archdiocese of Baltimore has recognized seven schools to receive the coveted STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) designation. STEM schools are required to meet certain criteria that set them apart from other schools as leaders in providing the 21st Century skills students need to be successful in today’s world.
Immaculate Conception School is pleased to go beyond STEM to become a STREAM school. The first school of its kind to pursue this distinction, Immaculate Conception School seeks to expand the project-based, inquiry-driven STEM model into the areas of Religion and the Arts. We are proud of being a Catholic school, and this step will help us to more closely align our mission with our Catholic Identity. Additionally, highlighting and furthering the success of our Fine Arts program will help us meet our goal of educating the whole child.
This instructional/curricular model originated with the 2007 report by the National Academy of Sciences, Rising Above the Gathering Storm and STEM has become a widely used acronym to describe schools’ increased emphasis on science and math and greater use of technology in classrooms to better prepare students for eventual careers in one of the four disciplines. To more clearly define this model in the Archdiocese of Baltimore, the Department identified several elements that must be present in a school’s teaching methodology, curricular and extra-curricular activities, in order to be recognized as a Catholic STEM school in the Archdiocese of Baltimore. Included among those elements are: continuous professional development for teachers, integrated use of computer technology and technology teaching tools, a successful advanced math track, data-driven decision-making, the presence of a science lab, and partnerships with businesses and/or universities focused on one or more STEM disciplines. ICS expands that focus by adding two more disciplines!
As a STREAM school, Immaculate Conception makes use of the "Engineering is Elementary" framework in its Science curriculum, employs the Saxon Math program, and participates in the annual Future City design competition. We also have SMART boards and projectors in every classroom, and every teacher has a laptop computer.
Our robust fine arts program includes an art studio, award-winning instrumental music ensemble and two outstanding choirs. Our community partnership with the Towson University Art Education program furthers this STREAM integration even more.
Our Catholic tradition teaches us to make use of the strong intellects with which God gifted us - we use reason and inquiry in Religion classes to pursue ever deeper understandings of our faith life. Then, in a project-based environment we seek to make manifest God's love for us through service learning in the community.
Critical minds and compassionate hearts - those are the hallmarks of a STREAM education at Immaculate Conception School!