In light of October being National Manufacturing Month, the administration has decided to prepare Oct. 24 as a day where students will go out and help others in the community while gaining experience for their desired career, hence calling the day Experiential Learning Day.
This process began in the beginning of summer, when teachers met together for half an hour every Wednesday in order to figure out all the details. Director of Career and Technical Education Blake Smith said the purpose of creating this day is to get students out of the building and into the community.The whole day is catered to what the students want and their interests are.
“By giving students choice, they’re going to buy in more to what we’re doing, because hopefully were going to have them go out doing what they’re interested in,” Smith said. “That was kind of our goal the whole time that we have enough choices that one of them hopefully speaks to them.”
While creating this event, the group established three guiding principles for the whole day. The first: all students need to have a plan for after they graduate from high school. The second, which guided the whole process: Students can be what they have not seen. The final: [Administration] cannot test students excellence, [they] have to inspire them in some way.
“The goal is to help students start to figure out a plan on whatever they want to do when Newton High school is over for them,” Rickard said. “It is good that they start developing a plan and that they start to think about a plan early is really important.”
During the course of the day, students will participate in a service project for a local non-profit organizations, go off campus to engage in activities related to their career interest and listen to presentations over specific careers, which will be from prior high school graduates.
“I think this is going to open their eyes, not only to the opportunities available to them here at Newton High School, but also to see the opposites out here in the City of Newton,” Smith said. “A lot of times we see students that go off to Wichita and get a job or Kansas City, but we have so many opportunities right here in Newton and we’d love to see more people stay and help this area grow.”