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Science Technology Engineering Math (STEM)

Reilly Students in the Lab
3D Printed StudentReilly Student in the lab


Engineering students

STEAM Coing Activities

STEM Mission

CUSD has an unwavering commitment to engage all students in meaningful learning experiences in order to develop STEM literate students who thrive in a constantly changing global community.

Overview and Purpose

CUSD’s STEM and STEAM programs encourage students to develop 21st Century skills in science, technology, engineering, art and math. Through a hands-on approach to learning, CUSD is preparing students to be college and career-ready. CUSD offers 28 career pathways and has over 500 college and career partnerships. Curriculum begins in preschool and continues through high school and beyond. Students have access to technology labs, Chromebooks, 3D printers, robotics programs, gardens, and more.

CUSD Innovation Programs
  • Preschool––Curriculum focused on inquiry-based learning and STEM development
  • Elementary––Innovation Labs, Outdoor gardens, Environmental awareness green-up grants, and Green Teams
  • Secondary––Middle school CTE Labs and high school pathways 
  • Award-winning robotics teams
  • Partnerships

For more information on STEM/STEAM programs at your school, please visit your school website.

CUSD’s district-wide robotics program is the home of the Robot Dolphins 5199, one of the top FIRST FRC competition robotics teams in Southern California. A beginners and advanced class is offered. Students learn hands-on engineering, fabrication and CAD skills, along with exposure to programming, electronics and pneumatics systems.

Both levels of classes are held in the Capistrano Valley High School advanced robotics lab and a beginner’s course is also offered at San Clemente High School.

STEM Partners
Discovery Cube Discovery Cube - Help shape the next generation of science enthusiasts who are driven by problem-solving and exploratory learning to engage in hands-on experiences in order to find solutions.
Inside the Outdoors Inside the Outdoors - A unique and hands-on environmental education program serving over 120,000 participants per school year.  Its mission is to empower students, teachers, parents, and the community to explore natural areas and expand their knowledge, understanding, and stewardship of the environment. 
Crystal Cover Conservancy Crystal Cove Conservancy  - Crystal Cove State Park is an ideal outdoor classroom for cultivating young environmentalists, Crystal Cove Conservancy is dedicated to protecting this rare piece of California’s history through a unique social enterprise model working in partnership with California State Parks.
Child Creativity Lab Child Creativity Lab - To cultivate creativity by providing kids with the experiences they need to look at the world in new ways. Engages kids with Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) programs.  Its approach to teaching uses the Design Thinking process and “STEAM” — the "A" (art) adds the ability for students to look at a situation from new and creative angles and inspires innovation. 


Capo Innovation Logo

ocMaker Challenge

The ocMaker Challenge was designed in collaboration with Central Orange County CTE Partnership (CTEp), Orange County Department of Education(OCDE) and industry and educational professionals. The Makers Challenge provides elementary students with exposure to hands-on problem solving and an open-ended, thinking-with-your-hands experience, guided by engineering design processes. Past project examples include musical tongue depressors, an automated lunch bot to avoid the cafeteria lines, and tracker ball which tracks the number of baskets made at recess.