Preparing students for life’s next step. That is the motto of Northview and what our community takes most pride in. However, not everyone takes the same path to gain the knowledge and experience they need. The East Campus is an alternative education high school that provides students with the chance to prepare for that next step in a non-traditional way.
Guidance counselor and former East Campus Dean of Students, Dion Charity, defines the image of the campus by reiterating the importance of the alternative education opportunity.
“There are 70 kids that enjoy a different style of learning for students who don’t necessarily feel comfortable in this building for numerous reasons. And now they get the opportunity to work toward their high school diploma at the East Campus,” Charity said.
The East Campus offers both day and night school, extra help after hours, and the ability to form closer relationships between staff and students.
Senior, Gabe Polczak, has attended Northview since first grade and found himself struggling with the strict environment and difficult curriculum at the high school. Mid-year as a junior he switched to the East Campus to eventually earn over 14 credits in less than six months.
“I personally like it a lot more over there where it’s not as pressured, it’s more relaxed, and there’s not homework which is nice- especially if you’re working a lot,” Polczak said. “But, I really wanted to do rowing this year because- why not? It’s my senior year. Turns out I can’t do that because I go to East, and they don’t offer sports there.”
Polczak appreciates the chance the alternative campus provides, but believes there is room for improvement for future students.
“I think every student should have the same opportunities, even if they have a different high school experience. Or at least a chance to, if they don’t want to be apart of it, then they don’t have to,” Polczak expressed.
Charity and Polczak both stress the importance of people knowing and understanding the campus and the kids that attend it. Stereotypes are everywhere- and the East Campus is no exception.
“Everyone thinks like ‘Oh you’re a bad kid, you go the East Campus’, but the thing is, some kids just get really stressed in this environment and the kids that go to the Alt are struggling a lot more,” Polczak said.
Preparing students for life’s next step applies to academics and also includes promoting the skills in life to be compassionate and understanding people as well.
“I think it’s a great thing that we know. That everybody knows,” Charity said. “I think it’s important that we continue to make everyone feel comfortable in earning their education- because in the end that’s what it’s all about: a student earning their education in anyway they can.”