Councilwoman Fairclough poses with the principals, parents and  students from Somerset Academy Homestead and Academy Oaks.

Councilwoman Fairclough poses with the principals, parents and students from Somerset Academy Homestead and Academy Oaks.

At the August 21st Special Presentations, Councilwoman Patricia Fairclough announced that Somerset Academy South Homestead and Somerset Academy Oaks were recently designated as STEM schools —institutions which focus on science, technology, engineering, and math.

Councilwoman Fairclough introduced Idalia Suarez principal of Somerset City Arts and Somerset Oaks (a 6-12 public charter school), and Layda Morales, principal of Somerset Academy South Homestead (known as Somerset Academy SOHO), which is a K-5 public charter school.

Idalia Suarez said, “Our ‘Why’ for doing this is that we talk about having our students be career ready and yet as a school system, we’re not focusing on the skills that they need.” By engaging in this STEM certification program, Suarez explained how they set out to change that.”

Somerset Academy South Homestead and Somerset Academy Oaks are the first two public schools in Miami Dade County to earn the AdvancED STEM certificate. There are only four private high schools in the county that have received the same designation.

To conclude the presentation, Councilwoman Fairclough presented Suarez and Morales with certificates of recognition for their achievement, along with STEM-designated lab coats, which brought smiles to their faces and which they quickly put on.

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