The JPMorgan Chase Foundation awarded a $50,000 grant to the Orlando Science Center for a Science Literacy Program at Evans High School. The program will provide Teacher Professional Development (TPD) to science teachers in order to increase inquiry skills and content knowledge, model creative techniques and offer strategies for encouraging problem-solving and critical thinking to the students of Evans High School.

“Partnerships like this one can be a tremendous support to our schools by enhancing their resources and providing science education in a way that really connects with students,” said Science Center President JoAnn Newman. “Chase’s support is enabling the Science Center to do what we do best and helping us to reach the kids that need us most. It really is a win-win for everyone.”

Along with these tools for the teachers; students will be provided with hands-on classroom activities relatable to "real world" science, technology, engineering and mathematical (STEM) applications. It is the hope of the Science Center to increase the number of students who choose to do science-based activities outside the classroom.

“We are focused on helping our Pine Hills community through investments in best-in-class non-profit organizations, like the Orlando Science Center” said Michael Dosal, Chase Central Florida Commercial Banking President. “Providing access to high quality educational opportunities for all children is a core principal behind our charity giving - and we look forward to witnessing these students prosper in their science learning.” In 2010, JPMorgan Chase Foundation donated $4 million to Florida-based charities. In Central Florida, Chase serves customers through 110 locally-based branches including a Pine Hills location, and a network of 558 ATMs.

TPD workshops will be presented twice monthly to 13 biology teachers at Evans High School and the lessons will be presented to students the following week. These workshops will feature inquiry-based activities, interactive demonstrations, experiments and activities that can be replicated by students in class. Students will benefit from making connections between the hands-on activities they do in class and the learning objectives.

To reward the students’ hard work at the culmination of this program, the Science Center will host a Family Science Day at the end of the school year. Students, parents and siblings attending the school will be invited to attend the event. Hands-on activities and interactive demonstrations will take place, encouraging families to work and learn together.

For more information about the Science Literacy Program, visit their Facebook page at


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  Orlando Science Center is supported by United Arts of Central Florida, host of and the collaborative Campaign for the Arts.
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