Standing on Top of the Mountain

MSA’s Simpson Awardee for 2018

Celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, East Career and Technical Academy (East Tech) in Las Vegas, Nevada stands tall as one of only 15 Magnet Schools of America nationally certified Demonstration Schools and the Dr. Ronald P. Simpson Distinguished Merit Award winner for 2018 – MSA’s highest honor. Known as “The Mountain” by students, faculty and staff, East Tech empowers its learners to climb to the top and reach for success in an ever-changing technological world.

With eight different programs of study – construction tech, IT, culinary arts, health information management, medical professions, mechanical tech, education, and hospitality – East Tech attracts students from different racial and socioeconomic backgrounds to come together to study under one roof. And it pays off: East Tech outperforms its Nevada peers with a graduation rate of 99.6 percent – a particularly incredible feat as many East Tech students are the first in their families to graduate from high school.

Jayme Rawson, East Tech’s Achievement Coach, reiterated this accomplishment at the Magnet Schools of America 2018 National Conference. “Our graduation rate far outpaces the graduation rate across the district and the state,” she said. “We’re very proud of that. We don’t have magical kids – we have a magical place.”

With 75 percent of the student body made up of first-generation college students, East Tech is particularly proud of its ability to prepare students for life after high school – through college, careers and beyond. Each of its eight program areas are centered in project-based learning and include tailored, real-world simulations, field trips to industry hubs and robust in ternship programs. All programs offer college credits for Career and Technical Education (CTE) coursework, and many students also receive a Certificate of Skill Attainment upon successful completion of their program of study. The school also partners with professional institutions across the state including Sunrise Hospital, PepsiCo, MGM, Clark County Water District, and Las Vegas Global Economic Alliance – all of which provide opportunities for students to explore workplace settings and evaluate their own potential professional track.

In an effort to build life-long skills, East Tech connects educational content across all subject areas and promotes collaborative problem solving with peers. East Tech is committed to five essential learning principles: Mastery of Content Knowledge, Written Communication Skills, Problem Solving Skills, Collaboration Skills, Technology Skills and Presentation Skills. Each student is assessed in accordance to these principles, providing them with an emphasis on the connection between academic courses and practical 21st-century skills.

East Tech’s principles ultimately reflect the magnet school pillars of academic excellence, innovative curriculum and professional development. And the school’s focus on delivering the best possible experience for students has rendered it a standout magnet school. East Tech entices each and every student who walks through its doors to dream big, be engaged and reach their full potential as a future member of the global workforce.

With a 97 percent college attendance rate and 180 medals won by students in Career and Technical Student Organization competitions, East Tech showcases what it means to be a model magnet school. And while they have already achieved great success, East Tech faculty are constantly endeavoring to improve for the years – and students – to come.

Success Stories » Standing on Top of the Mountain

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Raise the level of performance consistent throughout school districts nationwide and creates a platform from which all magnet schools can flourish. Magnet Schools of America’s national certification process is designed to recognize the hard work of the best magnet schools in the nation and to help them as they grow.

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