Two Carihi teachers are working with a group of students to design new courses which will replace the current Planning 10 course in preparing future grade 9-12 students for life beyond high school.
Teachers Donnie Fitzpatrick and Wayne Demerse have devoted their A blocks in the first semester to listening to a group of students share their opinions on Carihi’s Planning/Careers program.
“In any other organization you always consider what the client wants. [The students] are our clients, we should be helping them with what they need as opposed to what we think they need,” says Fitzpatrick.
“[Planning 10] was about answering questions and doing assignments because that is what was required,” says Kennedy Christensen, a Grade 12 student in this program. “I want to learn about things that will benefit me as a person, such as handling mental health, budgeting, and [planning] for life after high school.”
The aim of this program is to give students the opportunity to be heard.
“People [are willing] to explore who they are when we give them the opportunity,” says Fitzpatrick. “Success in this class will be when the kids can see that the specific things they discussed are being addressed.”
Christensen is happy to be able to share her thoughts on the needs of students in a Planning course. “[In this program] every student can voice their opinion.
“We as students deserve to have a voice and be taken seriously.”
One of the greatest challenges faced in this course will be coming up with a set of planning courses that will last.
“[We have to come up with] a meaningful curriculum that will meet the needs of Carihi students for the next five or ten years,” says Demerse.