Dearborn Center for Math, Science and Technology

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Dearborn Center for Math, Science and Technology
DCMST.jpg
"Achieving Excellence"
Location
22586 Ann Arbor Trail
Dearborn Heights, Michigan

48127
United States
Coordinates 42°20′26″N 83°15′37″W / 42.3406°N 83.2603°W / 42.3406; -83.2603Coordinates: 42°20′26″N 83°15′37″W / 42.3406°N 83.2603°W / 42.3406; -83.2603
Information
Type Public Specialized Secondary
Established 2001
School district Dearborn Public Schools
Principal Winifred Green
Staff 6
Grades 9-12
Number of students 260
Campus type Suburban
Color(s) Blue, Orange, and White                  
Newspaper 'Nerdschool Times'
Home High Schools Dearborn High School, Edsel Ford High School, & Fordson High School
Website

Dearborn Center for Math, Science and Technology (DCMST) is a specialized secondary education center with a four year advanced, research based, science and math curriculum located in Dearborn Heights, Michigan. The school was founded in 2001, with its first graduating class in 2005. Most of the school is located in the Henry Ford Community College building, but some of the Michael Berry Career Center (MBCC) building is also used by DCMST. About 75 students are selected each year from the three high schools in the Dearborn City School District. Once in the program, students are committed for four years. In freshman and sophomore year, students attend their three classes at DCMST in the afternoon from 11:15 to 1:55. Juniors and seniors attend in the morning from 7:35 to 10:15. The other three hours are spent at student's home school. DCMST is a member of the NCSSSMST, an alliance of specialized high schools in the United States whose focus is advanced preparatory studies in mathematics, science and technology. DCMST strives for excellence in projects centered on teamwork and a math and science curriculum. The school is also accredited by the North Central Association (NCA) as all other Dearborn Public Schools are.

Admission[edit]

DCMST takes admission applications from any 8th grade middle school student in the Dearborn City School District to fill all available spaces. These applications include a variety of information including an essay, teacher recommendations, and past standardized test scores [1]. This application process makes sure that a student's academic ability is not the only information used to decide whether that student will be admitted or not as there are many academically strong students in the district. There are around 180 students that apply for 78 spaces that are available at DCMST [2]. The available spaces are distributed to a pretty equal number of students that will be attending each of the three 'home' high schools of Dearborn High School, Edsel Ford High School, and Fordson High School.

Curriculum[edit]

Freshman year[edit]

  • Honors Chemistry (Two Semesters)
  • Honors Advanced Algebra (Two Semesters)
  • Technology & Web Design (One Semester)
  • Scientific Investigations (One Semester)

Sophomore year[edit]

  • Honors Biology (Two Semesters)
  • Functions, Statistics, and Trigonometry (Two Semesters)
  • Computer Science (One Semester)
  • Research (One Semester)

Junior year[edit]

  • Honors Physics (Two Semesters)
  • Pre-calculus (One (Accelerated) or Two (Honors) Semesters)
  • Dual-enrollment Calculus at HFCC or University of Michigan–Dearborn (UMD) (One Semester)
    • Optional if someone takes only one semester of pre-calculus
  • Calculus Foundations (One Semester)
    • Optional if someone takes only one semester of pre-calculus
  • Two semesters of electives

Senior year[edit]

  • Dual-enrollment Calculus at HFCC or UMD (One or Two Semesters) or AP Calculus (Two Semesters)
    • In some cases, another approved mathematics course such as AP Statistics can be substituted for a calculus course
  • Four semesters of electives

Electives[edit]

Class Title Teacher Length of Class (Semesters)
AP Computer Science
Shawver
2
AP Environmental Science
Hoehn
2
AP Statistics
Gorsline
2
Independent Research
Various
1 or 2
Discrete Mathematics
Shawver/Gorsline
1
Forensic Science
Hoehn
1
Anatomy & Physiology
Parks
2
Genetics
Parks
1
Epidemiology
Hoehn
1
Directed Study
Various
1 or 2
Intro to Mathematical Thinking
Gorsline
1
Product Design
Bayerl (MBCC teacher)
2
Topics in Chemistry
Hoehn
1

Students may also take an approved math, science, or technology-related dual-enrollment class at Henry Ford Community College or University of Michigan–Dearborn (1 semester).

In addition, students have been allowed to take an AP science class such as AP Chemistry or AP Biology at their home school and take their history class at the Michael Berry Career Center. This exception is made because DCMST does not currently offer these courses.

As of the 2009-2010 school year, DCMST no longer offers AP Computer Science AB because of the discontinuation of AP Computer Science AB by the College Board.[3]

Online learning[edit]

DCMST has been involved in using the internet as a tool to connect teachers, students, and parents together. A handful of systems have been used over the school's history, but the current online system being used by DCMST is the iLearn system based on Moodle and hosted by the Dearborn Public Schools website.

Through iLearn, DCMST teachers and other Dearborn Public Schools can give students easy online access to many things for their classes. Common items posted on iLearn by DCMST teachers include weekly syllabi, rubrics, quizzes, tests, documents, school news, individual student grades, and links to helpful sites.

Extra-curricular activities[edit]

  • MC2 (Math Competition Club)
    • Supervised by Kim Shawver and Jennifer Gorsline
  • Invent Club(No longer active as of 2012)
    • Supervised by Jeff Whittaker
  • Open Gym/Movie Night (Assorted Fridays)
    • Hosted by one of the grade levels
  • Open Computer Lab Usage (Assorted Weekdays)
  • Innovative Vehicle Design Club (IVD)
    • Supervised by John Bayerl
  • School Newspaper, Nerdschool Times(No longer active)
    • Supervised by one of the grade levels
  • Environmental Science Club
    • Supervised by Steven Scott

Field trips[edit]

Many of the field trips taken at DCMST do not include all students, as some have a limited number of spaces that are given out on a first-come-first-serve basis.

  • A handful to local colleges and universities such as University of Michigan–Dearborn, Henry Ford Community College, and Wayne State University (Yearly)
  • The Michigan High School Math and Science Symposium - MHSMSS (Spring; Yearly)
    • Sponsored by the Regional Math and Science Center at Grand Valley State University and Southwest Michigan Alliance of Mathematics, Science and Technology Centers [4]
  • The NCSSSMST Student Conference (Fall; Yearly)
    • New York, New York (2003)
    • DCMST hosted the 2004 NCSSSMST Student Conference
    • Atlanta, Georgia (2005)
    • Salt Lake City, Utah (2006)
    • Washington, D.C./Virginia (2007)
    • Rochester, New York (2008)
    • Melbourne, Florida (2008)
    • Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (2009)
  • Detroit Science Center (Depending on current special exhibit)
  • Physics Day at Cedar Point (Yearly; Juniors Only)
  • The NCSSSMST Student Research Symposium (June; Yearly)

Competitions[edit]

Special events[edit]

  • Senior Honor Ceremony (Yearly)
    • Also referred to as the Senior Celebration of Excellence
  • Probability Fair (May; Yearly)
  • Celebration (Monthly)
  • Clean-up and Improvement of Boatin Pond (May–June; Yearly)
  • Guest Speakers
    • College professors on specific scientific topics
    • Those in scientific, mathematical, or technological career fields (e.g. engineers, pharmacists)

Student body[edit]

There are a total of 260 students that currently attend DCMST [5].

Leadership[edit]

For each year at DCMST, there are elections that take place for class leaders. During the freshmen year, there is a council of 4 students from each home high school that are elected for a total of 12 students that will lead the freshmen class in things such as fundraising. From the sophomore year to the senior year, a President, Vice-President, Secretary, and Treasurer are elected annually by the students of that class to serve in leading things such as fundraising and out-of-school activities such as a class field trip in their senior year.

Achievement[edit]

DCMST actively supports students in undertaking participation in competitions, scholarship searches, and more. Many students have won recognition at SEFMD and a few have even made it to the International Science and Engineering Fair put on by the Intel Corporation. One competition that every student enters with a team of other students in their ninth grade year is the Internet Science and Technology Fair. There have been many teams from DCMST that have won recognition or made it to the finals of the fair where a website must be submitted on an invention dealing with science and technology. Many other students have submitted essays, research papers, and more to scholarship competitions such as those held by Dupont, Raytheon, and other corporations and organizations. DCMST students are encouraged to go ahead with their own research project in their junior or senior year - even if they do not take the research class. There are many other competitions that DCMST students enter throughout their 4 years at the school.

The Academic Achievement Profile of all Students in the Senior Class of DCMST by Year [6]:

Year Number of Graduating Students Average Number of AP Classes Taken by a Student by Graduation Average Number of Dual Enrollment Credits Granted to a Student Range of ACT Scores Average ACT Score Total Dollar Amount of Scholarships
2006
58
4
6
20 to 30
25.9
929,324
2007
55
4
10
19 to 35
28.7
1,752,000
2008
40
5
12
26-36
32
1,435,050

Drop outs[edit]

During the history of DCMST thus far, there have been students that have chosen to quit DCMST and resign from the spot that they had been awarded during the admissions process. These resignations usually come after the freshmen or sophomore year as students realize that he/she believes the program is too rigorous or that he/she does not want to go into a field involving math, science, and technology specifically. The latter is why many of the students who have dropped out have done so, as he/she wants to go into the arts. Many students that attend DCMST like the arts along with math, science, and technology. Others have moved out of the district.

Parent involvement[edit]

The DCMST teachers and staff have continued to try to keep parents involved with the school, events, fundraising, and more. There are monthly parent meetings held throughout the school year where many things are discussed from colleges and scholarships to event planning and fundraising ideas. The meetings are usually held on Tuesdays.

Fundraising[edit]

Fundraising is done around the year at DCMST by the different grade levels. Each grade level has their own pot of funds to hold events with and to add to with their own fundraising initiatives. Some fundraising techniques that have been used include bake sales, t-shirt sales, cosmic bowling, penny wars, and the open gym/movie night.

It has also become tradition for the junior class to be responsible for the different aspects of the Senior Honor Ceremony. This responsibility includes members of the junior class funding and/or donating materials to cover aspects such as refreshments after the ceremony and the décor for the evening and actually working at the ceremony (e.g. set-up, serving refreshments, clean-up).

Grants and scholarships are another source of funds for all of DCMST as the grant money helps to pay for or lower the costs for the students for things such as field trips.

Controversy[edit]

In the school year of 2005-2006, there was a disagreement with one of the home high schools, Dearborn High School (DHS), over the seniors of DCMST wearing the DCMST graduation medallions during their home high school graduation. DHS believed that the wearing of the medallions would make the seniors that attended DCMST look like they were 'better' than the other graduating seniors. DHS teachers and staff argued that DCMST equated to a 'club' just like any other student organization. They claimed that none of the other organizations (aside from National Honor Society) would be able to wear their 'club' sashes, ropes or other articles. After DHS told their seniors that attended DCMST that they could not wear the medallions at their high school graduation for this reason, a large number of DCMST students, parents, and teachers disagreed with the policy and the central district stepped in. The Dearborn Public Schools decided that as a compromise between the two schools, that a new district-wide policy would be created. This policy entails that seniors who graduated from DCMST would be able to wear a special colored cord at their home high school graduation ceremony, thereby avoiding wearing the medallions, but still receiving proper recognition. However, the high school colors of DHS are orange and black whereupon graduation students wear black robes. The green rope is indistinguishable from the black robes and would not allow for DCMST student recognition, the initial goal of DHS. Upon graduation in the Spring of 2006, students had been encouraged that the compromise was legitimate and that other clubs and organizations would not be sporting their given ropes, sashes etc. with the exception of National Honor Society. However, before the graduation ceremony started, it can be noted that the message to students in other clubs and organizations in which other garments were given had not been told they couldn't wear their extra decorations. In protest, one student, Elizabeth Means wore her medal throughout the ceremony.

In the latter part of the 2006-2007 school year, DCMST students started putting more momentum behind a petition that would allow for DCMST graduating seniors to wear their DCMST medallions at their home high school graduation. DCMST students and parents, other Dearborn Public students, and residents of Dearborn have started to give support. This petition movement has lost steam as DCMST has changed its policies in relation to the DCMST medallions. These changes in the DCMST medallion policy include not handing out the medallions to all students, but only to 4 students from each graduating class who had earned status as "Student of the Year" one of their four years at the school and making sure that the DCMST Senior Honors Ceremony is held after the graduations at the home schools. This prevents any students from DCMST from being able to wear a medallion (if they receive one) because the students would not receive their medallions until after the graduation at the home high school has already occurred.

School improvement[edit]

In the 2006-2007 school year, DCMST staff and teachers have been pushing students to use credible sources and use proper citation formats when writing research papers and conducting projects. The teachers have pushed to get students to understand and know the APA, MLA, and sometimes AMA formats for research papers/projects and other assignments. The teachers also do not allow students to use Wikipedia as a credible source of information at all.

Another improvement that is underway is a standardized lab report format for all DCMST classes that will be followed for all four years of the student's time at DCMST.

External links[edit]