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School board honors STEM, TAPS students

April 27, 2017
By J.T. Whitehouse , The Town Crier

The Austintown Board of Education recognized STEM and TAPS students' accomplishments at the April 19 meeting.

Several students were honored for placing among the top teams at competitions throughout the Mahoning Valley.

Among the students recognized were two Austintown Intermediate School TAPS math competition winners. TAPS - Team Approach to Problem Solving - is a competitive program that pits teams against each other to solve math problems.

The AIS teams recently competed in the event, sponsored Eastern Ohio Council of Teachers of Mathematics, along with schools from Boardman, Canfield, Fremont, Howland, Hubbard, Lowellville, Struthers and United Local.

From those school districts, there were 280 teams from fourth through eighth grades in this year's competition. Students worked in teams of four students while submitting their answers electronically.

For AIS, two teams were recognized at the board meeting. The fifth-grade team of Steven Canton, Dylan Bear, Michael Lewis and Samuel Savo placed first, and the AIS fourth-grade team of Elissia Loswego, Rachel Spalding, Elizabeth Spalding and Angel Williams took third.

The fifth-grade team was issued a certificate from Austintown Local Schools Superintendent Vince Colaluca for its first-place finish.

From the STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) program, Austintown Middle School instructor Danielle Chine spoke on the success of the program and how it is opening up for Fitch High School students as well. She presented student Sam Maguire, who then said how he felt about the STEM program.

"In middle school, I didn't like coming to school; in fact, I hated it," he said. "Being in the STEM program made me feel like a family member, and I started loving school again."

Both Maguire and Chine said STEM was not for all students, but for those who are made for it, the program has been a life-changer.

In other business:

b The board paid tribute to Ray Gordon, a retired Fitch custodian who passed away March 29. A plaque was given in his memory to his wife, Pat Gordon. Ray Gordon served Austintown schools for 24 years as a custodian.



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