The integration of science, technology, engineering and mathematics - STEM - forms a trans-disciplinary subject content in MCPS that is a vehicle for developing 21st century skills. The heart of STEM education is authentic learning and student empowerment, where students take action in their lives and communities based on their learning. STEM education integrates an inquiry approach that provides opportunities to enhance student success, engagement, self-esteem, and a desire to communicate. Inquiry promotes critical thinking skills, high levels of responsibility for learning, and a passion for writing about and sharing what has been discovered. MCPS elementary, middle, and high school teachers use Project Lead the Way (PLTW) for developing STEM innovations where all MCPS students develop the skills needed to succeed in the global economy.