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Media Contact:

Shell Amega, Paula Wagner or
Isella Castillo (por voz bilingüe)
213-744-7446

 
February 4, 2002
Governor Gray Davis Officiates at Ceremony to Break Ground for New Science Center School & Amgen Center for Science Learning
 

California Science Center Partners with Los Angeles Unified School District in Project to Change the Way Children Learn About Science

Governor Davis addressing the crowd at the groundbreaking. Photo by Leroy Hamilton
 

LOS ANGELES - Governor Gray Davis was joined today by Superintendent Roy Romer, Los Angeles Unified School District, Executive Director Jeffrey Rudolph, California Science Center and others in a groundbreaking ceremony to launch the construction of the Science Center School and the Center for Science Learning in Exposition Park. The event took place at the site for the new project, adjacent to the Science Center.

"This facility will improve public education in California and serve as a model for the State and nation," Governor Davis said. "The Science Center School and Center for Science Learning will exemplify California's leadership in science and math education, while enhancing our commitment to teachers."

The Science Center School is the result of a partnership between Los Angeles Unified School District and the California Science Center that will place a neighborhood elementary school adjacent to the Science Center. The kindergarten through fifth grade school will not be a magnet school but will focus on math and science, integrating language arts, social studies and fine arts in the curriculum. Part of the school and all of the Center for Science Learning will reside in the Armory Building, with the remaining portion of the school housed in a new building at the Armory's north side.

"We are very excited about this project," stated Romer. "The partnership between LAUSD and the Science Center is an example of our commitment to providing quality educational opportunities and quality facilities to the children of Los Angeles."

The Center for Science Learning will develop the community and public programs at the California Science Center. The relationships the Center develops with universities, school districts and informal education institutions will become valuable resources for educators, parents and community leaders. The Center will include thematic classrooms with multiple uses such as teacher training, children's workshops, parent/child classes and community programs, two laboratory spaces, a professional development library and a video production studio.

Governor Davis, Science Center Executive Director Jeff Rudolph and Superintendent Roy Romer join three participants from the Curator Kids Program who conducted the "foaming volcano" experiment. In the background in the far upper right-hand corner is Richard Nanula, Executive Vice President, Finance, Strategy and Communications for Amgen Inc. who announced a $3-million gift from The Amgen Foundation to the Center for Science Learning.
Photo by Leroy Hamilton
 

"With the Science Center School and Center for Science Learning located here, in the heart of Los Angeles, science learning will be more accessible to a population that has been traditionally under served," said Rudolph. "These two facilities are part of the original vision for the Science Center, where hands-on exhibits, a school emphasizing math and science, and an education resource center for teachers and other educators all work to reinforce each other-in one location."

As part of the ceremony, Richard Nanula, Executive Vice President, Finance, Strategy and Communications for Amgen Inc. announced a $3-million gift from The Amgen Foundation to the Center for Science Learning. "The Amgen Foundation's gift to the Center for Science Learning represents a unique opportunity to impact the way people learn about science," said Nanula. "We believe teachers should have access to the best science education resources available and this project reflects that objective." In recognition of The Amgen Foundation's major support, the Center for Science Learning will be named the Amgen Center for Science Learning.

Community leaders dig in.
Photo by Leroy Hamilton
 

Other highlights of the event included the "foaming volcanoes," an example of the type of science activities students will engage in at the new Science Center School and Center for Science Learning. Two students dressed in goggles and gloves stood by 2 graduated cylinders while a third student described the activity to the crowd. On cue, each student added the final ingredient to their cylinder, producing a huge mass of steaming suds that resembled a volcanic eruption and spilled over the table to the ground, to the delight of the audience. Later, Davis, Romer, Rudolph and others used shovels to unearth an area of the terrace for the traditional groundbreaking moment.

The new Science Center School and Center for Science Learning are scheduled to be completed in 2004. Fact sheet on the Science Center School and Center for Science Learning is available for further information.

The California Science Center is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., except for Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Day. Admission to the exhibits is free; IMAX ticket prices vary. For recorded information on IMAX show times, phone (213) 744-7400. For advance ticket purchases, group rates or to make a free reservation for any group of 15 or more (required), call (213) 744-2019. Parking is available in the guest lot at Figueroa and 39th streets for $6 per car. Both the Science Center and IMAX Theater are wheelchair accessible.

 
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