BURKBURNETT (KFDX/KJTL) — A new program at Burkburnett High School gives special needs students real-world work experiences.
“Let’s see, probably getting the bags ready for lunch, getting chores done, and helping the other workers getting lunches ready,” School to Work participant Dora said.
And they’re not just getting experience….they’re collecting a paycheck too!
“It’s been crazy and stressful but I really like to join in and I’m making money…” School to Work participant Adyson said.
Burkburnett ISD teamed up with Texas Workforce Solutions to make that possible, giving Burkburnett a unique program.
“We’ve been able to transition those classroom skills into actually workplace skills,” Burkburnett ISD Diagnostician Sarah Wood said.
Special education instructor Lee Varelman said the administration gave them all the opportunities to hit the ground running.
“[They] said get on it guys, figure it out, we did and know you see what’s just the start, what I hope is the tip of the iceberg for these kids,” Varelman said.
Students in the school-to-work program have opportunities to work on the cafeteria staff or the school store. A chance to log 20 hour work weeks while still in school and see their hard work pay off, literally.
“Tired a little but really really happy I’m helping others,” Dora said.
And the school district gets just as much out of it, helping fill open positions in their staff with dedicated workers.
“It’s going just great,” Burkburnett Child Nutrition Manager Ann Hammond said. “I don’t have any problem with her, she’s at them dishes or sweeping and mopping and she’s good.”
Giving them an opportunity and watching them grow.
“It’s pretty interesting to just help her learn her money skills, keep her on task, and just seeing her grow in this, in her job skills she’s doing, I’m very proud of her.”
Any business interested in gaining a new employee or a few, or any interested participants — you can get in touch with Texas Workforce Solutions by clicking here!