Otsego students obtain ‘ConnectEd with Financial Skills | Community

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Williams said a book he was given a few years ago – “Answering Why: Unleashing Passion, Purpose, and Performance in Younger Generations” – resonated with him.

Curt Williams, an intervention specialist at the Otsego High School, introduced the program at the school board’s November meeting. He said that the program will be a catalyst that will lead to a strong foundation for students after high school. It will connect classroom instruction and a supportive community with the skills the student needs to lead a fulfilling, successful independent life after high school.

Highlights

  • He submitted a grant to the Otsego Endowment Foundation to fund a curriculum to help students make decisions on how to get a job and make the right career choice and how to match their goals with their personal life.

  • “It really talked about purpose for kids moving from teenagers to adult years and their jobs,” Williams said.

There is the foundation class, which will help junors and seniors learn professional skills such as interviewing, resume and cover letter writing, time management and interpersonal communications. It also will help them pick a career that is right for them. This is a one semester class.

There will be three classes that make up Otsego ConnectEd.

A field experience class for juniors and seniors will build on the knowledge gained in the foundation class. Students will put into practice what they learned in the previous class by getting to work in the community. They will learn about job responsibilities and employer expectations. This also is a one semester class.

“They will reflect on what they’ve learned while working and what they learned in the foundations class so we can continue to build upon their strengths and work on areas that aren’t their strengths,” Williams said.

He said he was told by parents they want their kids to be able to balance a checkbook, read a bank statement, and understand what their paycheck means. A financial literacy class will have students participate in real-world simulations and extended projects aligned with financial literacy skills. “We’re creating a math class where they get to learn all of those skills,” Williams said.

A fundamental understanding of Algebra I is recommended for the financial literacy class, with is yearlong. The goal is for students to make better financial decisions, he said.

The class lends itself to projects that will put into practice what they have learned, such as establishing a budget, realize needs versus wants, the good and bad of credit cards and how they want to set up their lives. Otsego ConnectEd wants every student to graduate with the foundation that they can be responsible citizens who can meet every challenge that comes their way, he said. “I’m really excited about the program providing opportunities for students and giving them real world experience,” said Superintendent Adam Koch.