Stafford MSD students “take flight” with new drones

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June 10, 2021 by HCDE-Texas

Stafford Middle School students participating in the school’s STEM, drones, and robotics program finished the school year with new equipment.

Stafford Municipal School District, which received both first- and second-round Education Foundation of Harris County Partners in Education grants, used second-round funds to expand their STEM program and purchase additional drones.

The second grant of $9,377 positively impacts the ability of approximately 15 middle school students to engage in math and science by allowing them to learn how to operate commercial-grade drones.

With their new knowledge, students teamed up with the yearbook club for photography projects. Program leaders report high participation rates. In addition, many students are exploring possible training on AutoCAD software, a computer-aided design and drafting software used by architects, engineers, graphic designers, project managers, and other professionals to create two- and three-dimensional models. AutoCAD is widely used, and it helps in preventing product failures and warranty issues.

Students learn safety, maneuvers, flight rules, situational awareness, and managing the advanced features of the drones. More importantly, students learn the drones’ real-world applications, including traveling to inaccessible areas, transporting items, and aerial filming. As a result, students have started to explore the importance of the FAA drone license and have developed career aspirations as drone operators.

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