Redefining 'Student-Centered' Education

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If one wonders how Payson High School students are progressing toward graduation or if they are focused for life after high school, just visit the Payson Campus of Gila Community College (GCC) or visit the campus of Payson High School.

Recently Payson High School, Gila Community College, and Northern Arizona Vocational Institute of Technology (NAVIT) entered into a three-way partnership with the sole intent to expand academic and Career Technical Education (CTE) opportunities for students who are attending Payson High School.

NAVIT is a joint technological district that serves the Payson area.

Currently there are three central programs offered to students for college credit. NAVIT and GCC provide classes from 7:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. Monday through Friday on the college campus.

The programs include, health-related occupations, fire science, and certified nursing assistant.

Matt West, a student enrolled in FSC201, Patient Stabilization, said, "Everything I learn points to my future. This program gives me a big head start." West is an aspiring firefighter.

In addition to the central programs offered through NAVIT and GCC, Payson High School has established a dual-enrollment program with both NAVIT and GCC.

Students can earn college credit in the areas of building trades, accounting, culinary arts, agribusiness, and computer science. Computer-aided drafting is slated to be offered in the near future.

In the general education area, college algebra, a course accepted at all three state universities in Arizona, is now being offered at Payson High School for both high school credit and college credit.

Matt Weber, Assistant Superintendent of NAVIT, said, "Students and parents are both benefiting from the programs. It gives the student leverage on their career aspirations and the parents are saving tuition dollars. We are very proud of the Payson students."

For further information concerning the NAVIT Programs in partnership with Gila Community College and Payson High School, call 468-8039.

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