COMMUNITY VOICES | Getting caught up and earning college credits too

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My name is Brittney Poole and in my high school years leading up to my 12th grade year I have switched schools a lot. My 9th grade year I went to Open World Learning Community and Central SR High School. While I was at those two schools I struggled with taking the importance of school seriously. That caused me to get into a lot of trouble and to fall behind with my grades and credits.

My 10th grade year I went to Twin Cities Academy High School and Washington Technology Magnet. When I was at those two schools I learned the importance of school and how if I don’t take it seriously that it could and would effect me in the long run. I also was able to take credit recovery classes as apart of their extended day program. I started getting out of trouble, earning good grades, making up credits, and earning college credit.

My 11th grade year I went to Washington Technology Magnet again. I continued to get good grades and earn college and recovery credits. My 12th grade year from September to November I moved to Arlington Texas and went to Summit SR High School. In that school I earned college credit and I was earning above average grades I was even on track to graduate. In November before Thanksgiving I moved back to Minnesota and I was told that I wasn’t in Texas long enough to earn credits that would transfer to Minnesota because Texas goes by semesters and Minnesota goes by Quarters. That caused me to fall even more behind in school than I already was.

I was devastated but I still had to graduate so I enrolled in Creative Arts High School. There they have a college credit program and a credit recovery program but I was more focused on trying to graduate so I worked on my high school credits and credit recovery. During that school year I also went to night school at Gordon Parks High School. I liked it so much, that I then enrolled in the Gordon Parks summer school and online school and earned make up credits. I had more credits I needed to make up and I wanted to be full time at Gordon Parks High School to graduate on time, so I am now earning college credit there and making up those 3 months of school to be able to graduate in the spring of 2014 with my class.

Looking back at my journey through out high school I am glad that I earned the opportunity to go to Gordon Parks High School and earn college and make up credits. Having access to college credits and credit recovery has kept me motivated and in school. It also made me more appreciative of school and life in general because the Saint Paul School District didn’t have to open up a school allowing students to be able to make up credits but they did. None of my previous schools have been able to meet my learning needs as well as at Gordon Parks High School. In Gordon Parks High School they have a program in some of the English and Math classes where you can earn college credit. There is also an outside of school program to earn university credit named UHURU Youth Scholars.

My goals for the time that I’m at Gordon Parks High School are to graduate in the spring and earn college credit while I’m here and to be 100% ready for college when I leave the school. Looking back over my life I’ve struggled a lot with my school and life situations. But I feel that me not being able to graduate on time, and having to do a lot of make up work to get close to where I am now has made me stronger and it still is making me stronger as I fight to finish these last 9 credits and graduate in the spring of 2014. My advice to all the freshmen’s in high school is to take school very seriously and to not joke around and fall behind because if you do you will have to work 3 times harder to accomplish everything which as a result is not worth it. I would have rather did all the basic work in high school and be on track to graduate and worked hard to finish, than to have to do 3 times the work and work 3 times harder to get to a confident spot in terms of graduating.

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