The Washington Chamber of Commerce’s Leadership Washington class headed back to school on Wednesday, November 9 as they learned about the multiple educational facilities and opportunities in the Washington community.
Leaders Nicole Peterson and Jim Lester coordinated the group as they started their day at the Washington Public Library where Director Cary Ann Siegfried sent the class on a scavenger hunt to explore the library.
The class then moved to the public school district visiting each facility where they were provided informational tours of Stewart Elementary, Lincoln Elementary, Washington Middle School and Washington High School. They heard about several of the new district-wide initiatives focused on improving the lives of their students both emotionally and educationally. Learning about collaboration throughout the district to align the educational process between grades while addressing the individual needs of each student. Washington Community School District Superintendent Willie Stone welcomed the group at Stewart Elementary, and spoke while at the High School about the construction time frame on the new Middle School/High School project.
Our next stop was at Kirkwood Washington County Regional Center where members of the Kirkwood Regional Alternative Program explained their alternative school program and how it benefits their individual needs, with students telling of their success in the program. Then Washington County Center Director Tera Pickens explained the multiple courses and programming provided on location to both the community and Washington County high school students. The presentation included hearing from five dual enrolled high school students, who explained their successes in balancing their high school education along with taking college level courses at Kirkwood. In addition, class members had the opportunity to try their hand at virtual welding and a friendly competition of virtual painting.
At St. James Elementary we were greeted by Business Manager Mary Sue Marek with a presentation and video sharing the benefits and differences of a parochial education. We then were able to see the school and the kids in action on their way to afternoon prayer prior to dismissal.
The group ended their day with a tour led by Dave Hoffman at WCDC and learned of the many services provided by the clients as well as how WCDC is filling the need for adult daycare and rehab.