School Away from School
Students and teachers share how they manage to stay involved in their vocational area while being at home
Due to COVID-19, many schools are shutting down and becoming fully remote while others are implementing a hybrid system to allow students to go into school. Even with this hybrid system, it can be hard for students who are in vocational schools to stay active, as they can’t physically do their vocations from home; however, the students at Southeastern Regional Vocational Technical High School (SET) are doing their best to stay involved in their vocations while at home.
Students Jason Vaughn (Grade 11) and Celine Saliba (Grade 11) shared what their vocations were like before the pandemic put everything on pause. Jason, who is in the Electrical program, shared that he, “ [worked] in booths with other classmates and now we are split up with some of us at home and some of us at school doing residential projects.” Celine, who is in the Cosmetology program, shared that she, “[did] services on my friends, manicures, pedicures, and facials. We also worked on our mannequin doing perms, curling sets, finger waves, pin curls, and up-styles.” Although they miss their vocations pre-COVID, their teachers are doing their best to help implement their shops at home.
Mrs. Gauthier, a Cosmetology teacher at SET, shares what she does to help her students become more involved at home. “In Cosmetology, we’re really lucky because our kids have kits. [these kits have everything they need related to Cosmo] so I’m able to plan a hands-on activity task every single day that they’re home… When they’re home, I also have them record themselves making a mock Youtube video, where they can show me that they know the task and they can talk me through it.” She also continues to talk about how she assigns certain tasks on days that they are home and the days they come into school. It can be very hard to stay focused while staying at home, so being able to implement activities for students to do for shop is a great way to make school more enjoyable during remote days. In addition, it’s important for teachers to help make their students feel involved while at home, but it also helps when students take initiative. When asked what advice she would give, Mrs. Gauthier shares, “ [for teachers] to be completely honest with your students, and ask for their feedback… have open conversations with them.”
Bianca Pires (Grade 11) is taking matters into her own hands as she shares, “The things I’ve personally done so far was, during shop, we went out to go catch tadpoles, and I decided to take mine home, as sort of an observation study for myself.” Celine is doing the same and also shares, “I am personally getting more involved in the shop by practicing at home… I think about questions to ask Ms. G [Mrs. Gauthier] and what formulas I could make to get a certain outcome I need for my mannequin.”
All students included advice that they had for their peers. Bianca shared, “Take on little projects at home [related to their shop] and don’t be afraid to explore things yourself.” Celine shares, “ I would tell them [peers] to make the most out of what we have access to right now, and to be grateful we are where we are right now. We should also have a lot of hope” Jason shares, “Find a quiet environment where there aren’t many distractions because it’s easy to fall behind when trying to learn off of a computer.”
At Southeastern, students choose from 20 career majors in preparation for life’s challenges and opportunities. Our school combines a rigorous academic curriculum with state of the art vocational and technical studies to help students realize their full learning potential.
The schedule is designed to have students alternate between academic and technical coursework. This process promotes integration of studies and helps bridge the gap between theoretical and practical experience.
The hands-on approach to learning helps connect students to education and provides the basis for life-long learning – an essential skill in today’s highly competitive global market.
Upon graduation, students have the choice of furthering their education in any two or four-year institution or going directly into the workforce.
The Southeastern Regional Vocational Technical School District consists of a four-year public high school and a post-secondary technical institute. The high school offers 20 career majors to students from Brockton, East Bridgewater, Easton, Foxboro, Mansfield, Norton, Sharon, Stoughton, and West Bridgewater
Submitted by: Briana Pires, Brockton, Medical Assisting