Spokane County Open Doors Reengagement Program (referred to as Open Doors) is a new program designed to offer young adults 16-21 who do not yet have a diploma or high school equivalency (GED) an educational option other than dropping out of high school. For many reasons, there are students who are significantly behind in high school credits, at risk of dropping out, or have already dropped out of school. They are now without a high school diploma or GED,which significantly lowers their future options.
Open Doors is a consortium of school districts (currently Central Valley SD, Cheney SD, Deer Park SD, East Valley SD, Mead SD, Nine Mile Falls SD and Spokane SD), Northeast Washington ESD 101, and Community College s of Spokane who provide instruction and case management services to students in this program. New students are eligible if their school district of residence is a consortium member. They stay enrolled in their district (or may reenroll if they have dropped out) and are transferred to Open Doors after going through a thorough intake process. Every effort will be made to ensure that they are aware of all of their options and that this program is a good fit for them. Funding is a unique setup designated by the state legislature to offer more options to students through programs supported by state funds.
Open Doors is a program where students can work towards their high school diploma or study for the GED while learning college and work readiness skills as well as taking part in vocational training. This could include industry tours, job shadows, informational interviews, college tours and internships. Open Doors shows the relevancy between education and the work force. The staff help students see future possibilities, learn what isnecessary to get there and start taking steps towards attaining their goals.
This program has two pathways. The high school diploma pathway is through the Gateway to College (GtC) program at Spokane Falls Community College. Not only are students working on their diploma but they aretaking college classes and learning how to be college students. The GED pathway is located at the Next Generation Zone, where programs center on building college and work readiness skills as well as vocational exploration. These programs, including the GED classroom, have been together in one location since 2007 with much success.
Case management is an integral part of this program. All educational plans are individualized to include career counseling and wrap around services. The students and case manager build a healthy and safe relationship that is there as support in good times and bad. The case manager can help students trouble shoot when barriers pop up and will check in to see how things are going. In addition, the case manager will challenge students to push themselves so that they can reach the goals they want but weren’t sure they could ever attain.
For more information, contact:
Trina Clayeux, Director