Students at Plattsmouth High School (PHS) are preparing for the future like never before. Recently, the school was awarded a Nebraska Innovation Grant to refine its Wall-to-Wall Academy program. The PHS model is based on student interests, learning preferences, and career goals and involves extensive partnerships with community businesses and educational programs.

“My goal is to give each and every kid an opportunity to build a skill here, whether it’s diesel, auto tech, small engines, foundations, that’s what we’re trying to do,” said Plattsmouth’s Skilled and Technical Science Instructor Andy Christensen.

Students are responding positively to the program that provides hands-on experience in real world situations.

“We learn more by doing than listening or reading. It’s helped me figure out what I want to do. I have a leg up on a lot of kids that don’t know what they want to do in the future,” said senior Carter Grant. His classmate Seth Bolte agreed. “I like to work with my hands and not just sit down and do class work. This allows me to do that. I’ve already started using the skills I’ve learned at school.”

And it’s not just the students. Parents have seen big changes as well. Chris Wiseman has three kids who have all gone to Plattsmouth. “All of my kids have been excited about school, but what the academy has done is given a little bit different perspective and a better direction. They have more of a future look at what their lives could be like,” said Wiseman.

You can learn more about Plattsmouth’s career academies at http://www.phs.pcsd.schoolfusion.us/. For more information on Innovation Grants, please visit https://www.education.ne.gov/pmo/innovation-grant/.