The five-year Local Systemic Change project is part of a long-term, intensive, inquiry-based initiative that started in the district in 1997 with a pilot in two schools supported by state funds.
"Renaissance in Science Education" (RISE) is a model program based on professional development and support for all 372 K-12 science teachers in the district with nine elementary schools, two middle schools and one high school. There are 351 teachers K-6, ten middle school and eleven high school teachers, respectively. The instructional materials are mainly the Science and Technology for Children (STC) supplemented by "old" ESS kits (now published by Delta) and the new STC/Middle School units. At the high school level, teachers plan to examine and consider for adoption the latest secondary-level, exemplary, inquiry-based materials based on a plan for high school curriculum selection and implementation. This selection will be carried out during the first three years with the professional development program for high school teachers being designed and offered in years four and five.
Partners with the school district include: Washington University, St. Louis; the Missouri Botanical Garden; the St. Louis Zoo and the St. Louis Science Center.