A Gateway to Friendship

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A Gateway to Friendship

Marc Doty

Marc Doty

Marc Doty

Robert Miller, Staff Writer

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If you are attend Heritage High School you are accustomed to life skills students involved with collecting recycling from each class, or delivering the teachers their daily fix of caffeine from the, “Cool Beans Cafe” both ran by Mr.Wortinger. What many students don’t know is immense work and dedication that goes into preparing the life skills children for the gateway program.

“The Gateway Program helps them [Life skills students] not only improve upon skills
hey may use in everyday life, but as well give them work experience so that they may possibly enter the workforce after leaving the program,” said Mr.Catellanos, a teacher aid for the Life Skills program at Heritage.

A teacher’s aid for room B112. Life skills teachers and teachers assistants help special needs children of all levels. What they works on, is preparing them for the more advanced Gateway Program. The Gateway Program for those who don’t know; is where the life skills children attend after high school. After turning 18 they will enroll here and build skills in vocational training much like they do during the cafe and recycling program, up until they are 22.
   “Students that leave Heritage at age 18 then go into the Gateway Transition program, which offers students 18 from 22 the opportunity. That focus is on Vocational Training,” said Mr. Wortinger, a Life Skills teacher at Heritage.
While these classes and programs do help the life skills children prepared for life, what really inspires them and makes their day is interacting with their peers. When a student from the general population greats them or takes the time to do something for them it makes all the difference
   “It just brightens their day. It’s nice when they can interact and be a part of whatever is going on in the school,” said Mrs. Prestegard, also a Life Skills teacher at Heritage.
 The entire student body has the ability to take part in making a student’s day better. Not only is it polite, but it make their days and possibly yours by putting a smile on their faces.