Williamston Commmunity Schools is a leading school district in STEAM education and using technology in the classroom

While strolling the halls of Williamston Explorer Elementary in Williamston, students’ artwork lines the walls, backpacks and coats litter the floor and muffled discussion about this or that can be heard outside nearly every classroom. Unlike other elementary schools however, Williamston Explorer Elementary is in the works of producing the next crop of engineers, researchers, scientists and the like. After receiving three grants this past year, including $130,000 from Dart Container Company in Mason, Williamston Community Schools has invested the money into the K-12 district STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics) initiative it launched this year. The initiative will take place in a series of phases. “This year was phase one, which was the creation of a K-5 STEAM lab for both of our elementary schools,” said superintendent Dr. Adam Spina. 

STEAM teacher Sean Ferguson teaches 31 STEAM classes every week, with students ranging from young 5s to fifth grade.

Medical marijuana survey presents new possibilities for Bath residents

The Michigan Medical Marijuana Act establishes state law immunity to prosecution of those who use marijuana for medical purposes. This act was voter initiated and establishes qualifying patient and primary caregiver status. In Bath Township, Planning Director Brian Shorkey created a survey for the Bath community on new medical marijuana facility regulations, and whether or not it is right for the Township. “We want to hear from our residents first,” Shorkey said. “This is a big step within our community.

Williamston residents consider food waste

The produce aisle is unlike any other part of a grocery store. Vibrant produce sticking out at every turn while sprinklers shower fruits and vegetables with water to keep them hydrated. All of this time and effort is used to sell food, but some of that hard work will be for nothing. But this subject is a lot more complex than meets the eye. It has many different parts that negatively impact our society.

Meridian Township helps those in need

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 12 percent of Meridian Township residents are living below the poverty level. For those who are struggling, Meridian Township has many resources and programs for families in need. One is Meridian Cares. Darla Jackson is a human services specialist for the Meridian Cares program. Jackson helps families with finding shelter, covering utilities, rent to avoid eviction and even help with medications and furniture.

Meridian Mall looks to avoid the growing list of dead malls

Think back to the days you rode with your parents and friends to the mall, excited to finally buy that cool new pair of shoes or an outfit. You were greeted with the smell of warm pretzels at the food court and the sound of cheerful kids running around in the play area and arcade. The mall was the town’s hotspot, and now they’re closing faster than ever. Meridian Mall now battles the struggle of losing stores to online shopping. Dead — or malls with a high vacancy rate — are often due to advances in technology, online shopping and delivery services.

Supplement use in young athletes is not a big concern for local schools

Okemos and Haslett High School football players put a lot of work in the off-season to try to be stronger than their opponents. There are many ways to achieve that goal: summer camps, good dieting, weight lifting and taking supplements. However, there are many supplements in the industry, promising many different results. “I stay away from fast foods, tend to eat balanced meals and eat enough food throughout the day,” Okemos High School senior football player Domonique Clerkley said. “Throughout the day I eat Gatorade bars and fruit.

Federal lawsuit looks for ‘adjunctive relief,’ transgender school policies still important debate in Williamston

After months of deliberation and a slew of meetings trademarked with passionate arguments, the Williamston Community Schools Board of Education passed a pair of policies in November 2017 in relation to transgender youth and their definition, among other guidelines. And despite passing months ago, the debate surrounding the policies have yet to go away. Currently, there’s a pending federal lawsuit that names six of seven Williamston Board of Education members as defendants: Greg Talberg, Christopher Lewis, Sarah Belanger, Nancy Deal, Kathy Hayes and Joel Gerring. The seventh member of the board at the time, Jeffrey West, was the lone vote against the policies, which the school board passed 6-1. He is not named in the lawsuit.