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Respect, Community, Responsibility, Dignity
Statistics show that students who drop out of high school are more likely to live in poverty and suffer from unemployment, poor health, substance abuse, and/or violence. Young people with troubled histories benefit from an alternative learning environment that is rigorous and relevant, where they can develop relationships with caring adults and develop respect for themselves and others.
YouthBuild PCS gives young adults an opportunity to establish stable and productive adult lives filled with dignity and respect. Students are encouraged to pursue post-secondary education and/or to enter the workforce upon graduation. The YouthBuild PCS experience reflects real life, giving students a sense of community, belonging, and responsibility.
At YouthBuild PCS, individual learning needs are balanced with the needs of a strong united school community that is safe-learner focused. YouthBuild PCS differs from a traditional high school by offering intentionally small class sizes, a personalized instructional model, and work-based learning to ensure more meaningful student participation and growth.
Students at YouthBuild PCS help create and sign a code of conduct. The code of conduct fosters personal responsibility and establishes positive group norms. Students also participate in community meetings, join in community service activities, and provide input to school staff through a Student Leadership Council.
YouthBuild PCS students attend school 5 days a week, 9:00 am – 3:00 pm, rotating between the academic classroom and construction training worksite. As a way to ensure that YouthBuild PCS students are able to stay in school throughout the course of the school year, YouthBuild PCS provides students with a bi-weekly stipend of $8.25 per hour for the time they are on a construction site and $15.00 per day for the time they are in a classroom, to assist with the cost of transportation, breakfast, and lunch. Though not a livable monthly wage, the stipend removes some economic pressures for students.
The YouthBuild PCS curriculum is based on the 2014 GED Standards and the Test of Adult Basic Education Skills, with a focus on the most important skills necessary for passing the GED and being ready for college and career training.
Student progress is assessed using the Common Core College and Career Readiness Standards for Adult Education (CCCRSAE). At YouthBuild PCS, we view assessments as opportunities to communicate with students about how they are progressing toward mastery of the material; evaluations are used to determine ultimate levels of expertise. Because each student is on an individual learning path focused on meeting the content standards he or she needs to progress towards obtaining his or her GED, students receive feedback based on Mastery Level of a standard. Students do not receive traditional grades on a grading scale.