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Since the Keystone Project is a school site-based effort that...

Issue Addressed:

Since the Keystone Project is a school site-based effort that includes twenty-one school districts ( forty- eight schools) which are very disparate in size, geographic remoteness, clientele, and needs, our most difficult task is maintaining a clear, acceptable vision and articulation of science education across these audiences and locales within our grant consortium.


In our project's multiple entry point process, schools are required to submit a strategic science and technology plan for their individual school. These plans are used to focus and guide schools in their reform efforts as well as provide the project staff with information about critical needs that can be addressed through institutes, site intervention, or partnerships with other consortium schools or experts. The plans are viewed as dynamic works in progress since they will be reviewed and revised in light of new learning experiences and already accomplished plan goals during the following two years of more intense support from mini-grants as well as during the schools' more independent implementation of their plans. At the end each institute, the school's over-arching plan is reviewed. Each individual teacher and administrator is encouraged to reevaluate their roles and responsibilities to help make the science program sustainable and effective over time. These personal commitments are done in the form of an action plan. Bozeman Public Schools' science and technology resource and material center (STEC) and the Keystone Project work together as coordinating agents between and among the schools by providing exemplary materials such as FOSS, STC, and Insights, by encouraging cross schools/districts kit training support, by connecting classrooms across the project in shared learning experiences, and by encouraging schools to interact when they share a common goal. One method of connecting teachers and classrooms is through the telecommunication network component of our grant. From the CBAM model, we have adopted the use of the questionnaire to track changes in concerns from school to school and the science program configuration checklist to guide our groupings for specific assistance. Throughout the project1s and the individual school1s efforts, the mentor teacher leaders provide the backbone of the focus group support system. A conclusion that we have reached is that efforts have to be multi-modal in scope so leaders of the reform also need to be searching for and applying new approaches to old problems to enhance the chances that we will all go away from a learning experience with a similar perception about our vision.

Unresolved Issues:

Although our telecommunication network is expanding to include more teachers and classroom to classroom interactions, it is still hampered somewhat by lack of updated equipment, expertise, and a fear that there may not be enough funds to support the necessary upgrading that will be needed after the initial investment from the state technology efforts. One other issue is that as more schools and teachers have entered into active participation, the science and technology center's materials have been maximized so new funding sources will need to be found to support material acquisitions.


Myra Louise Miller, 1/7/1998


Program Management



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