Initiatives in Education

  • A2 STEAM at Northside

    Integration of STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts & Mathematics) education to enrich kindergarten through 8th grade learning for Ann Arbor Public Schools students.

    A2 Virtual+ Academy

    Online learning option available to all public, non-public and homeschool students in Grades 5-12.

    Early Childhood Education

    Expanded early childhood education offerings, including Great Start Readiness Program (GSRP) and tuition preschool classrooms located at Allen and Thurston Elementary Schools for 4-year-olds. 

    Pathways to Success Academic Campus

    Pathways is a high school campus for students preferring a smaller, more intimate academic environment. Through multiple pathways and flexible learning opportunities students can learn in a traditional instructional model, online, or project-based setting. Students also have the opportunity for community internships and dual enrollment earning college credit. Pathways students will meet all the Michigan Merit Curriculum High School graduation requirements.

    International Baccalaureate (IB)

    The rigorous IB program develops intellectual, personal, emotional and social skills to live, learn and work in a rapidly globalizing world. The International Baccalaureate program for Primary Years (grades K- 5), Middle Years (grades 6-10), and Diploma Years (grades 11-12) is located at Mitchell Elementary School, Scarlett Middle School and Huron High School. The IB Program will be fully implemented in school year 2016-17. 

    Expansion of World Languages

    Offering expanded World Languages throughout our schools to include Spanish, German, Latin and French with the addition of Chinese, Arabic and American Sign Language – throughout select elementary, middle and high schools.

    Young Fives Program Expansion

    The Young Fives program gives children the “gift of time” to develop academically, socially and developmentally in a friendly and caring environment. The program is designed for students who are five years old between May 1 and September 1, or by December 1 with a waiver. Young Fives classrooms are located at Abbot, Bryant, Dicken, Haisley, Lawton and Logan Elementaries.

    Technology Initiatives

    We thank the Ann Arbor community for supporting the $45,855,000 technology bond, over 10 years, that will provide exceptional technology support and devices for our students. Initiatives for 2014-2015 include:

    • Upgraded network infrastructure at 16 sites with approximately 150 new switches, 486 wireless access points, 2,547 data drops.
    • Installed over 517 projectors at 15 sites.
    • Teachers and administrators paricipated in a two-week work study trip to Singapore, fully funded by the Toyoate Education Initiative in STEAM innovations program through Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A, Inc. and administered by the Institute of International Education (IIE). Innovations program to enhance STEAM teaching and learning.
    • Conducted four days of STEAM Professional Learning Academy to teachers, focused on the theme: ENGAGE. CONNECT. TRANSFORM.
    • Partnered with Michigan Virtual University (MVU) on the My Blend project. 42 teachers finished the first course.
    • Implemented New World Finance and Human Resource management software system.
    • Implemented two additional Project Lead the Way technology lab sites at Huron High School and Northside A2 STEAM.
    • Implemented Google Apps for all AAPS students.
    • Installed 22 new Career Technology Education (CTE) computers in 4 CTE labs.
    • The Technology Department continues oversight of 3 grants:
      • Toyota STEAM Professional Learning Academy (PLA) grant ($27,000)
      • Ann Arbor Public Schools Education Foundation (AAPSEF) A2 STEAM Lab ($50,000),
      • IMRA America, Inc. through the AAPSEF, Design, Technology, Environmental Planning (DTEP) grant ($100,000).

    School Building Maintenance and Improvement

    AAPS and its Phyiscal Properties department continues work to maintain our schools and to ensure a safe and improved educational environment for our students and staff.

    • AAPS is phasing in front door security measures, as well as implementing a painting plan for all schools.
    • Exterior doors are being replaced in our schools. Currently about 50% of exterior door replacements are complete.
    • Brick repairs, window upgrades/repairs, fascia repairs and roof replacements are in process at all schools throughout the district.
    • The tennis courts at Tappan and Clague Middle Schools were recently completed.
    • Playground upgrades are currently in process at our elementary schools, as well as an exercise path at Clague Middle School and repaving of the upper tennis courts at Pioneer High School.
    • HVAC upgrades
    • Hallway floors were replaced this past summer at Dicken, Allen, Lawton & A2 STEAM at Northside. Media Center and main office carpets were replaced at Carpenter Elementary as well as the Slauson Middle School music rooms, Pattengill Elementary music rooms and Lakewood Elementary office.
    • Infrastructure upgrades for plumbing and electrical in progress.