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The PASS team at Woodland High School is excited to see their students during deliveries.

Woodland High School’s Positive Academic Support System (PASS) team continues to support struggling struggling students with remote learning during the statewide school closure. Woodland High School introduced PASS in 2017 to help ninth-graders who were at risk of failing one or more of their classes. Members of the team work one-on-one with students, acting as their “school parents” to make sure they get the support they need to engage with their learning.

According to a news release from Woodland Public Schools, providing students with the support they need as early as possible may be the key to their overall academic success. 

“Studies show that students who end their ninth year on-track by passing all of their courses are about 3.5 times more likely to graduate from high school than peers who fail one or more classes,” Assistant Principal Dan Uhlenkott said. “With the Core 24 requirements, students do not have much wiggle room to fail even a single class and still graduate, much less fail a core class.”

Students in the PASS program also might need additional support in their schooling for a variety of reasons. 

“Often, poor performance in school is a symptom of other issues occuring in a student’s life,” Uhlenkott said. “Our PASS staff members act as ‘school parents’ to help freshmen navigate academics, attendance, discipline, class changes, independent course curriculum; pretty much any aspect of high school.”

The PASS team at the high school includes Stacy Gould, the program’s coordinator, as well as five others. In order to support the program financially, Woodland High School Principal John Shoup and Gould applied for and received a grant from InvestEd which provided the school with $5,000 for the program each year for the past two years. 

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Stacy Gould, Keitra Curnutt and Cyndy Grayson prepare to deliver school supplies and snacks to their PASS students.

During the statewide school closures due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the PASS team delivers school supplies as well as a variety of other needs including Chromebook chargers, musical instruments and quarantine essentials. 

“We miss engaging with our students, so seeing them from a socially-distant appropriate distance has been wonderful,” Gould said. “We’re also able to help them by answering questions about online learning, connecting with their teachers, lining up the right materials for home learning, and providing them with any other assistance they need.”

Nearing the end of the school year has been particularly challenging for the PASS team. 

“This is the time of the year when we would get to see how much our students have grown through their first year in high school and have become members of our community,” Gould said. “It’s tough not being able to see their progress in person.” 

To learn more about how Woodland Public Schools continues educating students and serving the community during the statewide closure, visit woodlandschools.org/home-learning-stories

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