Students learn independently through one-on-one sessions with teachers in a personalized learning environment
BRUSH PRAIRIE — Kayla VanSchoiack, a junior in high school, is a prime example of how self-motivation and responsibility lead to success. She has completed enough coursework that she’s on track to graduate high school an entire year early. She plans to work for her dad’s flight school business after graduation, and eventually wants to study interior decorating.
VanSchoiack took her accelerated, flexible path to graduation at Summit View High School, one of three alternative learning experience (ALE) programs in Battle Ground Public Schools. Summit View affords its students the opportunity to work at their own pace and on their own schedules. Students learn independently through one-on-one sessions with teachers in a personalized learning environment. Most students enroll at Summit View because they want to earn their diploma in a flexible environment tailored to their specific needs.
Timothy Gurnik knew he wanted an accelerated path to graduation. He was just 14 years old when he enrolled at Summit View immediately after his eighth grade year. After just one year at the high school, Gurnik is on pace to graduate in half the time it would have taken him at a comprehensive high school. He plans to start earning college credits from Clark College through the Running Start program and has a college goal of earning bachelor’s and master’s degrees in accounting. Like VanSchoiack, Gurnik plans to go to work for his father’s company (a local accounting firm) after graduating from Summit View.
“Summit View is the perfect school for students who are able to stay on task and don’t like the distractions that come with a typical high school setting,” Gurnik said. “It’s been a great experience for me, and I encourage others to consider whether Summit View is the right fit for them.”
Beyond the high achievers seeking to graduate early, there are countless other reasons why students find that Summit View is an ideal fit for their needs. Some students have anxiety disorders or other medical/health issues that make a traditional school setting difficult or impossible to navigate. Other students need to work full-time jobs to help financially support themselves or their families, and Summit View offers the flexibility they need to make ends meet.
Senior student Cecilia Halme has been working full-time jobs for nearly three years. Halme says she likes the independence of working full-time and earning money, but that it was difficult to balance her work schedule with her studies at Battle Ground High School. She enrolled at Summit View High School last year and immediately knew it was a better fit.
“I had a hard time focusing on school before I came to Summit View,” Halme said. “I felt like I spent a lot of time just sitting around. Now, I’m able to make my own schedule and can complete all my coursework visiting campus just once or twice per week.”
Summit View also has its share of students who attend because of demanding training and competition schedules. Take for example ninth grader Amanda Howard, a competitive cheerleader who travels frequently for competitions with Oregon Dream Teams. The flexible learning format at Summit View enables Howard to focus more on her training and practice regimen so that she can achieve her peak performance levels at competitions.
Working at her own pace has allowed Howard to accomplish more in less time. “I’ve been able to finish more coursework in just two months at Summit View than I would have thought possible,” Howard said.
Summit View provides an individualized learning environment that encourages academic and personal growth to prepare students for the challenges of the future. Curriculum is adapted to each student and the teachers excel in delivering and explaining content in 1-on-1 settings. Students can work towards their diploma through the end of the school year in which they turn 21. Students who are interested in attending Summit View should contact their high school counselor.
Information provided by Battle Ground School District.