Local principal headed to D.C. for education meeting - MyFoxAustin.com | KTBC Fox 7 | News, Weather, Sports

Local principal headed to D.C. for education meeting

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The principal at Manor New Tech High School is off to Washington for a meeting on education. His trip comes just two weeks after President Obama walked the school's halls.

A White House policy advisor describes the meeting as an informal brainstorming session. The goal is to start a conversation about how to change the way students learn in high school through high school-employer partnerships.

"I'm really excited. I was quite surprised," explained Principal Steven Zipkes after learning he was wanted at the meeting.
Zipkes is one of about two dozen people who will brainstorm with Arne Duncan who is the Secretary of the Department of Education.

"Students need to know how to collaborate, communicate and have a strong work ethic," Zipkes explained. "It's all about project based instruction." He says his students can have anywhere from 50 to 60 projects a year.

"We're going to have a debate on nuclear energy," explained Sophomore Epiphany Kidwell. She was one of about 30 students who got to stand on stage with President Obama. She says she's not surprised he picked her school. "Students are actually excited about it and they want to be here because they are engaged in the content," Kidwell explained.
Zipkes says told President Obama the most difficult part about putting the school together was changing the paradigm of education and the way things are done.

The fourth class of seniors will graduate in June.


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