As part of the transition from the Industrial Arts curriculum, a portion of the shop classroom was converted into a job skills area – otherwise known now as the PreVocational Laboratory. Here, many of the secondary education classes learn “work simulation” skills on a weekly basis. The room is equipped with tables where students can sit to work as well as benches where they can stand to practice skills which would be used in work situations. With a wide variety of options, teachers choose the task most appropriate for each student in their room.
There is a packaging station where students are required to put a number of items into a bag. This skill is carried over to the school when students bag silverware for use in the cafeteria. Vocational skills include sorting by various characteristics including colors, shapes, or zip codes. Other types of tasks are the assembly of things such as nuts, washers, and bolts to match the correct sizes and sequence of steps. With these skills, students are eligible for employment by businesses such as Occupational Services, Inc.
Students are assessed for accuracy of work, time needed to complete a task, and/or the number of pieces completed within a given time period. Successful progress and mastery of skills in the Pre-Vocational Laboratory are the stepping stones to many volunteer opportunities and paid work employment in the school or the community.