Cassville High School looks to partner with area businesses
Career readiness pathways aimed at keeping local youth in Barry County
High school students are regularly asked what they want to do when they finish school, and Cassville High School has been making steps to help prepare those students for whatever path they decide to take.
Richard Asbill, Cassville superintendent, said school is interested in the potential of developing a program to allow students and teachers to have the experience of education to career pathway.
“We have had a meeting with Rhonda Stafford with Regal, and basically we had an open conversation about what we hope for this program would be,” he said. “We want to know how to prepare future graduates for jobs.”
Asbill said there are so many options available at a business like Regal, from manufacturing to design and marketing, to pre-product development.
“There are so many paths for the students to look into,” he said. “We hope to do this same thing with other local businesses.”
Asbill said the school wants to develop relationships with local businesses to find out what kind of experiences they want from students to go from education to career.
“It is all about bridging the gap there,” he said. “We want every student to leave high school career-ready for what ever they choose, from college to job.”
Asbill said the school wants to have better conversations with local businesses to make sure the students are in alignment with any specific business’ needs.
“If this eventually turned into an internship, that is great,” he said. “We want to know what to do for our students to make them better employees and recruitable employees.”
Ron Reed, economic director for Cassville, was the person behind the screens. He contacted the school and Regal to help make this meeting happen.
“What we are trying to do here is take all the steps we can as a community in relation to industry, city and school all collaborating together to make sure our students are aware of the job quality and opportunities in our city,” he said. “Right now, we are fearing that some of the jobs that are available in some of our local industries does take some technical training.”
Reed said the goal is to be more involved in reference to schools and industry, and to try to make the education in the classroom more relevant to how knowledge gained in school will be used in the working field.
“The critical thing there is showing the students what they are learning and when that comes into play in a job,” he said. “It makes things more realistic for those students.”
Reed said the students have the opportunity to have a great job here locally, but they have to understand there is a gap between education and career, and the students have to learn those skills.
“We have several industries here that are not fully staffed, and jobs available are excellent jobs,” he said. “As we work to move our community forward, this is something that needs continuous work.”
Reed said industries cannot come to Cassville or expand in Cassville if there isn’t an adequately trained workforce.
“Projects like this help strengthen who we are, and help us grow as a community,” he said. “We hope that the collaboration between city, education, industry and economic development will be ongoing with no end. This needs to become a normal way of life in the city of Cassville.”