The Student News Site of Oakdale High School

The Oakdale Post

The Student News Site of Oakdale High School

The Oakdale Post

The Student News Site of Oakdale High School

The Oakdale Post

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Oakdale’s Learning for Life Class Takes on New Project

Abbey Ware, an L4L student, wipes off a table as she takes part in the Fit 2 Work custodial project.
Adell Remsberg
Abbey Ware, an L4L student, wipes off a table as she takes part in the Fit 2 Work custodial project.

Just like general education students, Learning for Life (L4L) students need to be prepared for life after high school and what that looks like from person to person. Adell Remsberg and the L4L team are taking a hands-on approach to making that transition easier. 

The FCPS Special Education Handbook defines Learning for Life as a program with “a small structured learning environment, a high staff to student ratio and a focus on the Essential Elements, functional academics and pre-vocational/vocational training.” Oakdale’s L4L program just completed a custodial project, which is part of the “vocational training” area of Learning for Life. For the project, teachers could sign up to have their rooms cleaned by the Learning for Life class. 

“The custodial project came from a new curriculum we are implementing in class. It is called Fit 2 Work,” said Remsberg, PE and health teacher and coach of the track team. 

Remsberg assisted in the writing of the curriculum that the custodial project and other work-based projects came from. “We were given tools to start the exercises and jobs, but we wanted to make it more fun and give the kids a hands-on experience with each job we go over, so we have a big project at the end of each job,” Remsberg shared.

Jobs that have been or will be completed by the class include barista, dog groomer, and grocery store employee. For barista, teachers around the building could sign up for deliveries by students in the program, supporting new class activities as well as getting a cup of hot coffee, delivered with a smile. For dog groomer, service dogs will be brought in to teach students to groom and walk them. 

Individuals with disabilities have a desire to work, but the lack of opportunities makes this difficult. Programs like Learning for Life  at Oakdale  High School are very important, as only 22% of adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder work (National Autistic Society) and 57% of adults with Down Syndrome are employed (National Center on Health, Physical Activity and Disability). 

Hopefully, this new program will increase these numbers and create new opportunities for individuals with disabilities going forward.

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Cyra Ottinger McKain
Cyra Ottinger-McKain is a senior at Oakdale. She enjoys English and participating in school plays and musicals. She plans to attend a university as a Editing and Publishing major.
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