School starts for G.O.A.L. Academy students | CraigDailyPress.com

School starts for G.O.A.L. Academy students

Lief Jensen is a sophomore at G.O.A.L. Academy and is completing his second year of study while he works at an area auto-repair shop.

— The official start of the school year for students enrolled in the Guided Online Academic Learning Academy or G.O.A.L. Academy is Monday.

Enrollment opened Aug. 15, so that means that some students have already started classes.

"It's going really well. We have this rolling start and kids start once they enroll," said Aryn Henneke, principal for the northern region.

G.O.A.L. is a statewide, multi-district, online public charter school that serves between 3,750 to 4,000 high school students, age 14 to 21, across the state.

Of their students, 97 percent are considered "at risk" due to poor attendance, transience, being teen parents, having been incarcerated or having abused drugs or alcohol and would have been likely to drop out of school without an educational alternative.

"We offer a comprehensive high school education through online services and local drop in centers, where kids can come for tech support, face to face support services from teachers, para-professionals and/or administration," Henneke said. "For students it's free. We are a public school, so we are funded at the minimum rate by the state the same as other school districts," Henneke said.

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Enrollment figures are not final, but registration has decreased from 66 in 2015 to 59 students currently enrolled to attend the Craig drop in center located in the Centennial Mall.

Jauneth Madsen's son, Brandon, is the third in their family to attend G.O.A.L.

"G.O.A.L. is workforce-related, career-based curriculum. The electives are more career based, so we feel that our children, by attending G.O.A.L., are better prepared for the work force," Jauneth Madsen said.

Brandon transferred from learning online to the blended learning, part online and part face to face, offered by G.O.A.L. and after his first week of school he's enjoying the program.

"I like that I can work at my own pace. If I want to get three math classes done, I can get them done, I don't have to wait, and there are still people there to help me if I want," said Brandon Masden. "If you don't like sitting at the computer all day, you can go out to a classroom. It's the best of both worlds."

The alternative school is in its fifth year of operation in Craig.

"One of the unique parts of goal is that we work very hard to be part of our local communities and try hard to hire local people to take care of our local kids," Henneke said.

Contact Sasha Nelson at 970-875-1794 or snelson@CraigDailyPress.com or follow her on Twitter @CDP_Education.