In response to the dramatic changes in high school operations due to COVID-19, the TVS Pre-ETS team has been working virtually to continue assisting local high school students with job preparation skills.
The TVS Preparation for Employment Success team works with the North Carolina Department of Vocational Rehabilitation Pre-Employment Transition Services (Pre-ETS) program to assist students with an IEP or 504 plan in Transylvania and Henderson County High Schools. Since the beginning of the school year, Pre-ETS has worked with each high school to best allow for the easiest and safest collaboration.
TVS Pre-ETS Team Lead Jessica Casey and TVS Pre-ETS Program Specialist Montana White, have been working with almost 160 students in six separate high schools within the two counties via computer screens.
“With the semester being virtual, we have actually been able to meet with classes more often and offer extra help when students need more discussion,” said Casey. All the high schools are organized differently to best accommodate social distancing and health safety. Currently, Pre-ETS teachers are teaching a total of 24 classes and are in the process of adding one more to their schedules.
To best accommodate the virtual world, Pre-ETS teachers have changed their education tactics. In the past Pre-ETS has used games and interactive activities, which are no longer options. Instead worksheets, videos, reflections and discussions have become the daily activities.
“We have been very successful transforming our curriculum for a virtual platform,” said White. “The students are actively participating and fully engaged in our activities.”
The virtual curriculum changes have the Pre-ETS team planning some fun new experiences. Casey and White are in the beginning stages of planning virtual tours of local businesses. The tours will be recorded and posted on the students Google Classroom for students to get an idea of what working in that specific location would be like.
Looking ahead, Casey says, “we are happy and excited to deliver whatever the schools need from us as decisions are made about the Spring semester.”