Over 50 schools have already applied to a new Trust for STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) equipment.

The Genesis School-gen Trust, established by Genesis Energy, was created to provide the tools teachers seek to inspire students’ interest in STEM and renewable energy.

To celebrate its launch, the Genesis School-gen Trust is inviting all schools to apply now for the first application round. This initial round will distribute $50,000 worth of STEM and solar equipment to schools. Entries can be submitted via the Trust’s website and successful schools will be announced on 17 May.

A Milford School student learns about renewable energy using a mini-solar array

The Genesis School-gen Trustees, including education, IT and energy-generation experts, will determine which schools receive the equipment packages.

Tamaki Primary School Deputy Principal and Genesis School-gen Trustee, Lou Reddy, says STEM equipment is the key to integrated learning in schools, because it allows children to examine real-world situations and use practical tools to make positive change.

“For kids, learning without a problem to solve is meaningless,” says Lou. “By resourcing education in this way, the Trust provides an energy boost to give teachers an opportunity to integrate STEM learning into a broader context.”

Equipment provided will include electronic devices such as laptops, Chrome books and iPads as well as coding and robotics equipment. Science equipment packs will cover chemistry, physics and biology. Solar packs will include panels and monitoring equipment and the school will be linked to the long running School-gen solar programme, so students can learn about energy production and compare their energy generation to other schools. Solar panels will also help the school to save on energy expense

Genesis CEO Marc England says that Kiwi kids are known to be innovative problem solvers.

“The right equipment is vital for children’s learning. The Trust is another way Genesis and its customers can support schools and help students get the STEM skills they’ll need to meet the social, environmental and economic challenges they will face in the future.”

From April, Genesis customers will be able to donate $1, $2, or $5 through their monthly bill to support STEM and solar equipment packages for schools. Genesis will cover the Trust’s administration costs so that 100% of customer donations go to schools for STEM and solar equipment.

“Even if customers only donate a dollar each month, their combined donations will enable the Trust to gift thousands of dollars of equipment every year – which will support children and schools all over New Zealand,” says England.

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