science equipment -- including the basics such as sinks and
microscopes, as well as high-tech media devices -- and providing
laptop computers to all fourth- and fifth-grade students.
"We will have some Arnold Beckmans here at Eastbluff, and we want
them to have a state-of-the-art lab, where they can learn science,"
Bonnie Swann, Newport-Mesa's director of elementary education, told
the Pilot. Beckman, whose name adorns a center at UC Irvine that will
be part of the Eastbluff program, was a scientist and businessman
renown for his many inventions.
Having heard this, what would stop a parent from deciding to send
a young boy or girl with a healthy interest in science to Eastbluff?
The end result? The students win, Eastbluff's enrollment rises, and
the district gets to see just how well such a program works.
The pilot project also will help district officials evaluate what
to do with the $282 million in bond money they hope voters will
approve next month. The Measure F list of projects includes similar
science classrooms for all the district's elementary schools.
That might be the best rationale yet for supporting the bond,
which is at the center of a relatively quiet campaign when compared
to 2000's Measure A, which was just a third the size. If the district
can show that the latest bond's hundreds of millions of dollars will
go directly to improving our students' classrooms and their
education, it will be much easier to sign on for a continuation of
Measure A's bill -- which essentially is how the tax will come out of
The science curriculum sounds promising. What else might our money