Forest Heights STEM Academy receives national distinction


LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (News release) — Forest Heights STEM Academy (FHSA) recently announced that it has been recognized as a Project Lead The Way (PLTW) Distinguished School for providing broad access to transformative learning opportunities for students through PLTW Launch and Gateway. It is one of just 176 middle schools across the U.S. to receive this honor and the only in Central Arkansas. PLTW is a nonprofit organization that serves millions of PreK-12 students and teachers in over 12,200 schools across the U.S.

“The PLTW programs at FHSA provide students with a unique opportunity to explore real-world, STEM-focused problems in an engaging and contemporary way. This is truly an experience which will prepare the students of Forest Heights STEM Academy, from kindergarten-eighth grade, to solve the engineering and technological problems for the 21st century.” Amber Harbin, STEM Coordinator.

The PLTW Distinguished School recognition honors schools committed to increasing student access, engagement, and achievement in their PLTW programs. To be eligible for the designation, FHSA had to meet the following criteria:  have more than 50 percent of the student body participating during the 2018-19 school year;

have strategies and supports in place that support reasonably proportional representation with regard to race, ethnicity, poverty, gender and can support such claims with relevant data.

Through PLTW programs, students develop STEM knowledge as well as in-demand, transportable skills that they will use both in school and for the rest of their lives, on any career path they take. PLTW Launch and Gateway empowers students to lead their own discovery and uncover a range of paths and possibilities they can look forward to in high school and beyond.

“It is a great honor to recognize Forest Heights STEM Academy for their commitment to providing students with an excellent educational experience,” said Dr. Vince Bertram, President and CEO of PLTW. “They should be very proud of their work to ensure students have the knowledge and skills to be career ready and successful on any career path they choose.”

FHSA is part of a community of PreK-12 schools, colleges and universities, and corporate and philanthropic partners across the country united around a passion for providing students with inspiring, engaging, and empowering learning opportunities. For more information about PLTW’s recognition program, visit

For more information on FHSA’s PLTW Launch and Gateway programs or to set up a school visit, contact Amber Harbin at

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