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Hope for high school dropouts

10:21 am July 2nd, 2013

High school dropouts in the Eatonville School District can still graduate by tapping into some extra help.
The district is working with American Academy, a Utah-based company that offers its services nationwide, in a program called Will Graduate. Dropouts are re-enrolled in school, are given a laptop computer and can choose from more than 230 online courses to complete their education and earn a district-issued diploma.
The students can study and complete their assignments at home on a schedule and pace that suits them. If they need help, they can speak at any time with technology specialists, certified teachers and mentors. And it’s all free for the students because they are enrolled with the school district.
An education advocate assigned to the Eatonville district is Brian Storie, who has beein in the role for 13 years as a specialized counselor. Eatonvlle is the 90th district nationally to work with American Academy. Storie explained that he meets with participating students each week to check their progress and contacts them regularly to offer help and encouragement.
The program in Eatonville began in March and has 23 students at various stages of progress. Its first graduate was scheduled to receive his diploma last week from district superintendent Rich Stewart during a small ceremony at Eatonville High School that included cake and refreshments, Storie said.
He said the new graduate, an example of how students can overcome the setbacks of dropping out of school, “is a humble, low-key individual who is not used to attention.”
Will Graduate is open to students in grades 9 through 12. They need to have finished eighth grade and must be younger than 21 before the district can approve their participation.
The students can earn up to six credits per year and generally take about the same amount of time to finish the Will Graduate program as they would to finish graduate in the traditional fashion. They can finish faster by taking additional courses..
American Academy recommends that students spend about 25 hours per week on their school work. Their time commitment and progress on monthly course requirements depends on how well they understand and complete the work. Some students will spend less than 25 hours a week, and some will need more time, officials said.
Most of the content for courses is online, but some of it also comes on CDs for language courses and novels for English courses. Such materials are either shipped directly to students or can be checked out from their local advocate.
More information about the program is available from Storie at 253-753-7491 and brian.storie@wlllgraduate.org. Enrollment specialists can be reached at 360-312-7002.

One Response to Hope for high school dropouts

  1. Eric Watson Reply

    July 2, 2013 at 1:11 pm

    I am a Sumner High dropout. I quit in 10th grade. Because I was not enrolled in a votech class and the waiting period would enroll me in the middle of my 12th grade year. For those who really dont want to go to school but want to work…you dont have to stay in school. However before you drop out look for that important job you really want to do in your thoughts. ME? I went to Tacoma and was hired instantly under the table. Hard to find those ones. But!!!! they are out there. Those jobs can teach you more than most schools do. The company I worked for was Marine Construction. In 2 years I learned more than any school could teach you in 5 years. During this I picked up on stock, salvage ideas, how to operate self employment that can feed you and your family as well. Have your own hours and meet many people and show those you meet you are trustworthy and a good business person as well as friend. This is called old school work. YOU tell them right away that you will not accept pay till the job is done. If they ask you to do more than originally asked then you kindly tell them I would have to ask ($$$) more as it exceeds the original quote. When you get paid, and customer is happy….they will tell their friends and so on. Be the cheapest in town!!! Sure sometimes you make it or break even. But!!! when they know you worked your butt off for less than what its worth to them…they just might hand you another 20 and say thanks we might find something else for you later.

    School is good but to work and learn is betta

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