A column by Cass R. Sunstein of Bloomberg News in the July 21 edition of The Bulletin caught my attention as he discussed reasons why more American students don’t major in science. He references a study pointing to students’ lack of preparation to enter the science field as the primary reason for the low number of science majors. Perhaps readers do not know that in Bend there is a school focusing on this very issue.

At Buckingham Elementary, the staff is embarking on an ambitious plan to become a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) school. The teachers at Buckingham, on their own initiative, chose to adopt a STEM focus as a way to better serve their students.

STEM is receiving a great deal of attention on local, state and national levels. The staff hopes to capitalize on this interest, and the accompanying resources, to provide students with opportunities that will open doors for them in college and provide them with skills employers are seeking.

Becoming a STEM school is not an easy task, but the Buckingham staff is dedicated to making this happen. One crucial step in the transformation will be establishing community partnerships.

As Buckingham moves forward with the STEM program, it will be reaching out to the business community and government agencies to establish community partnerships with the school and/or specific grade levels. I hope they can count on enthusiastic support from the community while endeavoring to address a national issue at the local level.

Dr. Kristin Hanson Gonzalez, Buckingham Elementary parent