Paris ISD considers Non-Traditional Campus

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PARIS, TX -- Paris ISD is looking at ways to help non-traditional students that will help reduce the dropout rate.

Paris ISD Superintendent Paul Jones announced Monday night that the district is looking to implement a non-traditional high school that would begin next school year.

"We want to look at what can we do to provide an opportunity where those students won't have to dropout," said Jones. "If they're ready to enter the workforce, maybe you come to school in the morning and work in the afternoons. We just want to be flexible and provide a program for the students."

The program will target students who must work to provide for their family, need to graduate early or cannot learn in a traditional setting.

"We're going to be able to help even more kids," said Paris Alternative School Principal Joan Moore. "Rather than a student saying, 'I can't do this or I'm going to leave school or it's not important to me,' maybe we will be able to take that student, that young person, and help them see what the value is."

The district plans to use it's alternative school campus and faculty that's already in place, leaving a minimal financial impact. School officials expect between 30 to 60 students to apply for the program, making for smaller classroom settings.

"They can work at their own pace and in many cases they can earn more credits in a year's time at the alternative high school than they can at the traditional high school," said Deputy Superintendent Mark Hudson.

The non-traditional campus would also partner with Paris Junior College to provide dual credit and vocational courses.

"They will take things that will enable them to enter the world of work as soon as they receive that high school diploma," said Assistant Superintendent Robert High.

The school board will vote on the non-traditional campus at next month's board meeting.

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