The engineering program at Bel Air High School (BAHS) has officially received national certification as a Project Lead the Way (PLTW) program, a distinction that is only given to schools that successfully demonstrate a commitment to PLTW’s national standards.
“We’ve seen how PLTW inspires students to think critically and problem-solve,” said Steve Salcido, BAHS Project Lead the Way teacher. “We are extremely proud to be PLTW- certified.”
In order to receive the certification, BAHS Assistant Principal Dr. Octavio Sanchez and a team of BAHS teachers, staff, students, and community members submitted a self-assessment of the school’s implementation of PLTW Engineering. The self-assessment was followed by a site visit from a PLTW-affiliated team, which met with the school’s Advisory Council tasked with supporting the PLTW program within the school.
“Congratulations to the Highlanders and thank you for your commitment to students,” said PLTW President and CEO Vince Bertram. “We look forward to continuing to work together to prepare students to thrive in our evolving world.”
BAHS Principal Louis D. Martinez said over the years, the school’s PLTW engineering program has drawn more students to the fields of engineering, math, and science, and “gets them thinking about college and their careers.”
“We are extremely proud to be PLTW-certified and ecstatic that our students are eligible for college-level recognition, which may include college credit, scholarships and admissions preference,” Martinez said.
PLTW is a nonprofit organization that provides a transformative learning experience for K-12 students and teachers. As part of its commitment to PLTW standards, the BAHS engineering program has empowered students to step into the role of an engineer, adopt a problem-solving mindset, and make the leap from dreamers to doers.
In addition, the PLTW certification provides BAHS teachers with high-quality professional development training that gives them the support and resources they need to devote more time to inspiring students.