NEW HAVEN, Ind. (WFFT) - New construction has been happening every day in East Allen County Schools and coming along with the new construction are new programs to help prepare students for the future.
Tim Wiegand, Executive Director of the new Career Technical and Alternative Education program in the district said, "We want kids getting hands-on experience in a classroom setting, in a lab setting where they can learn the skills when the go into the work of work."
Wiegand says the district recognized the need for a program that will help put students into the workforce directly from high school years ago, even before the current administration was in place. The idea of the new programs been met with applause from most everybody involved.
Wiegand said the district realized "Not every kid needs to go to college and there’s a lot of great jobs out there that can set kids up for a lifetime of success and don’t require a college degree to accomplish that. The community was behind it, the district was behind it, the board, the superintendent."
The new programs will go into the New Haven Intermediate School, AKA the old Meadowbrook Elementary School, once they move to their new building at the site of the old Park Hill Learning Center at the start of 2019 school year. The district plans to restructure the classrooms in the building to fit the needs of the programs.
The programs will all be half day. The Automation and Robotics program will be the first to start in 2019. Then in 2020, students will be able to learn Advanced Manufacturing, as well as Cybersecurity. Students will also have the option to learn to become Pharmacy Techs or Certified Nursing Assistants and receive their licenses. These are all programs Wiegand says fit the needs of the area.
"We have a lot of local businesses, especially manufacturing, but healthcare as well that have said “we need workers” and if you have a program that’s training students in a particular skill set that we need, we’re going to be talking," Wiegand said.
The goal is to hopefully expand in the building and add more programs for the years to come and although the concept sounds a bit like Anthis Career Center, Wiegand said that they're not looking to compete, but add to the options for students to help prepare them for the future.
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