KCPS Middle College Program uses education to beat adversity

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The “conventional” path for a highschool scholar is something however lately.

A rising variety of college students are confronted with distinctive and complicated life points that do not all the time translate into the classroom and might deliver their schooling to a halt.

Working to bridge that adversity with schooling, is Kansas Metropolis Public Colleges and the Metropolitan Group School Penn Valley Campus, which partnered again in 2018 to create the KCPS Center School Program.

“As a result of there was a spot for this – I imply there’s youngsters that may somewhat come right here then go to a daily highschool,” this system’s prolonged studying coordinator, Annette McDonald, stated about creating this system.

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One of many first college students to enter this system was Huda Alkhatib.

“It’s… superb, like severely, this program saved my life,” Alkhatib stated.

Alkhatib was 20 years outdated and within the 10th grade at East Excessive College when she instructed her counselor, “I can’t do that anymore.”

“Each time a scholar knew my age they [would] begin laughing and instructed me you’ll not make it, you’ll not get your diploma since you are too outdated,“ Alkhatib stated.

These college students knew Alkhatib’s age however not her story.

In 2013, on account of the warfare in Syria, she and her household needed to depart for Egypt, and three years later she would come to Kansas Metropolis by means of Jewish Household Companies, with English as her second language.

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Courtesy: Huda Alkhatib

When Alkhatib arrived, as a result of she didn’t have any paperwork from her earlier faculty, she was positioned within the ninth grade.

“And once I got here, to be sincere, we requested do you want any papers from my residence nation they stated no you’re good,” Alkhatib stated.

However when she tried to resolve the problem about what grade she ought to technically be in, Alkhatib stated paperwork was all of the sudden requested.

“My faculty is down now, I can’t get something. My faculty dropped out, from bombing,” she stated.

It is that sort of life concern that nearly prevented Alkhatib from ending highschool.

Fortunately an educator working to get a then new program off the bottom recruited Alkhatib to be one of many first college students.

“I don’t need to choke up however it’s a giant deal,” McDonald stated. “Being instructed properly, ‘you possibly can’t come right here anymore,’ ‘you’re too outdated,’ ‘you gained’t make it to get your highschool diploma,’ after which she stayed with me and we acquired it. It’s a giant deal.”

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Courtesy: Huda Alkhatib

“Even in case you have many issues in your life, it doesn’t matter what, simply go get your highschool diploma, full your schooling,” Alkhatib, who’s decided to assist rebuild her residence nation, stated. “Like me, from a warfare nation, I needed to surrender, however I didn’t as a result of in all probability I’ll return in the future to my nation and assist them and the a method I can get that is by my schooling.”

A brand new cohort of scholars now sit the place Alkhatib as soon as did, however she is rarely various ft away to assist information them as an administrative assistant for the KCPS Center School Program. She has one 12 months left earlier than getting her medical coding and billing certificates.

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Huda Alkhatib has completed highschool and is one 12 months shy of incomes her medical coding and billing certification. Alkhatib is among the many inaugural cohort of scholars on the KCPS Center School Program.

College students who’re in comparable conditions don’t all the time discover somebody like Annette McDonald.

McDonald stated she has administration to thank for supporting this system.

“Dr. Lee and Dr. Bedell, Dr. Lee is the president right here at MCC and our superintendent — [they had] that sort of compassion to know that college isn’t all the time sq., it doesn’t all the time must occur in the identical place it’s occurred for 100 years and [were] keen to take a threat as a result of this was a giant threat,” McDonald stated.

MCC’s Penn Valley campus not solely supplies the house to study, but additionally helps college students earn school credit score whereas ending highschool.

The KCPS Middle College Program is a partnership between the MCC Penn Valley Campus, KCPS and the Full Employment Council, providing companies that assist put together for the HiSET examination, post-secondary choices, and a pathway to a two-year diploma program at MCC and Profession-Technical coaching and certification.

The subsequent KCPS Center School Program screening evaluation program is scheduled for Tuesday, Oct. 12, and Wednesday, Oct. 13, from 7:45 a.m. to midday on the MCC – Penn Valley Campus, positioned in room 503 of the Campus Heart.

A seat could be reserved by texting (816) 803-6356 or calling (816) 604-4019.

For the reason that program’s inception in 2018, 229 college students have graduated.

This system has an 83% commencement charge.

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