Douglas L. Jamerson Elementary School: An Example of Excellence

FLATE's focus on manufacturing excellence is fueled by its NSF ATE funding support to build two-year degree advanced technical education programs that effectively contribute to Florida's advanced manufacturing workforce.  The FLATE partnership and merger with FloridaMakes represents a mechanism to expand this advanced manufacturing workforce creation to impact all of the pathways to workforce excellence. D.L. Jamerson Elementary School, a full-service school in St. Petersburg Florida, demonstrates our model curriculum that foreshadows this continuum of workforce development efforts.

A detailed examination of their website, https://www.pcsb.org/jamerson-es, is recommended however, their Vision and Mission statements will provide a quick peek.   




Coincident with FLATE's foundation in 2003, the Pinellas County School District was faced with a poor performance elementary school that needed immediate and drastic attention.  Together with the school district, a proposal to create a completely new curriculum that used mathematics and engineering principles as instructional components in every topic in every class room was funded by the Department of Education Magnet Schools of America program. Our work in that curriculum began then and its impact is demonstrated now.

The Jamerson education platform is interwoven into all of their lessons and activities. Over this coming year we will highlight some of their work. However, for today, the following string of visual salutes provide reminders of their excellence and set the stage for future FLATE FOCUS submissions. 

The U.S. Department of Education Magnet Schools of America program provides support to hundreds of school districts across the country. The program supports capacity development–the ability of a school to help all its students meet more challenging standards–through professional development and other activities that will enable the continued operation of the magnet schools at a high-performance level after funding ends. Finally, the program supports the implementation of courses of instruction in magnet schools that strengthen students’ knowledge of academic subjects and their grasp of tangible and marketable vocational skills. The program also supports a competitive and rigorous award system that recognizes excellence within its supported school districts. As indicated within their Mission statement summary, D.L. Jamerson continues to receive the Magnet School Excellence Award, however, Jamerson is also the first school in Pinellas County School District, one of the 10 largest school districts in the country, to receive the distinction of a Certified National Magnet School.

In addition to its "A" Florida School grade, the Florida Department of Education also recognizes D.L. Jamerson with a Five Star School Award.  This award was created by the Commissioner's Community Involvement Council and is presented annually to those schools that have shown evidence of exemplary community involvement. Total school commitment to student, parent, and community is also reflected in Jamerson's PTA awards.   These awards now include the National PTA School of Excellence award since 2016.

An additional sign of excellence is recognition by professional organizations within your peer group. For decades the Future of Education Technology Conference gathers creative education professions from around the world for an intense and collaborative exploration of new technologies, best practices, and education pressing issues.  This conference also supports a national STEM Excellence award to recognize excellence and innovation in STEM education at the primary, middle, and high school levels, with winners selected from each level. D.L. Jamerson is a recipient of one of these awards.


In summary, D.J. Jamerson Elementary School is a vigorous supporter and conveyer of engineering based instruction. The premise that this approach as a systemic school curriculum platform will produce a school environment that academically benefits its students has been demonstrated. However, this is a rigorous and long term academic pathway that has a strong "all or nothing" commitment requirement. If we have sparked your interest check out future FLATE FOCUS issues. If we have triggered your impatience at that information transfer pace, just e-mail gilbert@usf.edu for immediate response to your queries.