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Grand Island school program draws national attention
It's a relatively new educational program, but it's already gaining national attention. It's the Skills Academy in Grand Island Public Schools.
This is just the second school year for the Skills Academy. Two educational and behavioral consultants helped the district develop the program.
Now, they're helping other schools model programs after this one.
The Skills Academy is a balance of academic and social skills.
It's for students who need a little extra attention.
"Throughout the week, they obviously have social goals that they're working on and it might be about accepting feedback or following direction, or responding to no for an answer. They may do that within the context of the learning environment, but they have social laboratories, so they have the opportunity to go on outing and practice those skills in the community with direct feedback from staff," said GIPS Director of Support Services Toni Palmer.
These kids all have some sort of emotional or behavioral disorder. The main goal is to get them in a smaller learning environment. They can get more specialized instruction. And eventually, get back into regular classrooms.
"They kind of graduate out of it. Once they develop those skills and show they can maintain those skills in the regular education setting. So, we've had some students go back to their home schools and continue to be successful," said Palmer.
Schools in states like New Mexico and Alaska are working on programs based off of the GIPS model.
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