Preparation for Transition begins early in every student’s educational process at New Road Schools.
We begin with an initial assessment of every child’s capabilities, strengths, and interests, and gradually introduce activities into the student’s curriculum that will help them once formal transition programs begin.
Formal Career Education program begins at age 14. Students start by participating in classes where they are actively engaged in hands-on work related activities. These classes include:
- Learning all aspects of running a business from choosing the merchandise, advertising, and producing custom made products
- Training on the operation of small machines, sublimation machine, engraver, embosser, embroidery machine, heat press, and more
- Involved in the planning and execution of our monthly/holiday sales
- Working as a team to complete orders for local businesses for mailing or to collate materials
- Introduction to kitchen and food safety
- Food prep skills (measuring, weighing, chopping, dicing, sauteing)
- Gathering ingredients and executing a complete recipe
- Working toward independence in healthy meal planning, preparation, and clean up
Career Education at New Road School of Ocean County includes work opportunities in our own micro community businesses, New Road Boardwalk. These are student run businesses that incorporate a variety of work-related skills.
New Road Boardwalk Businesses
Shooting Star Cafe – a student run cafe serving breakfast and lunch items and culinary treats. Coffee drinks are also available for New Road staff. Students are scheduled to work the cafe where they will work the register and fill orders at the counter. The cafe is available for dine-in or take-out orders.
Stingray Stop – a student run convenience store stocked with a variety of snack items. Students are scheduled to work the store at various hours throughout the school day. Duties include working the register, stocking shelves, pricing items, and monitoring inventory. For the New Road students, purchases at the Stingray Stop are also tied in with the schoolwide behavior system.
New Road Apparel Shop – a student run shop that is fully stocked with New Road School apparel and notions. Students are scheduled to work the shop at designated hours where they sell items to staff and students and utilize the cash register. Students are also responsible for maintaining inventory and executing sales using appropriate customer service with a smile!
In addition to the on-campus businesses, there are a wide assortment of jobs in which students participate beginning in 9th grade. High school students are assigned to jobs that rotate throughout the school year. Positions are filled based on a student’s interest and ability. Students are responsible for filling out their time sheets properly, reporting to the work site on time, and learning all of the important aspects of a job. On-campus jobs mimic all aspects of real life jobs and students are expected to meet certain job requirements in order to maintain their employment. Students receive “school money” where their earnings are tracked. The high school students, as a group, then have the opportunity to take a trip to the Mall two times during the school year, to make purchases with the money they have earned. The goal of working on campus is to assist students in beginning to identify their own personal work preferences, along the way, students begin to develop responsibility, independence and confidence that will assist them with future endeavors.
Sample On-Campus Job Assignments
- Imitation Station
- Creative Cooker
- Squeaky Clean
- Spic & Span
- Lean On Me
- Supplies Unlimited
- Lunch Bell
- Everyday Envelopes
- Go Green
- Shine On
- Copying Business
- Culinary Program
- Culinary Clean Up
- Kitchen Maintenance
- School Laundry
- Peer Tutoring
- Classroom/Building Supplies
- Lunch Menus, Orders
- Classroom Collections
- Recycling Program
- Building Maintenance
The New Road School partners with area businesses to offer job experiences which will better prepare them for future employment. Off-campus internships are Structured Learning Experiences (SLE) and usually begins at the age of 17. These off-campus SLE’s build work skills that students have gained while working On-campus and gives the students the opportunity to test their skills in the real world.
Students follow a training plan developed by the local business and our SLE coordinator that take into account the student’s strengths and weaknesses. Students are placed in volunteer positions in the community but are “paid” with New Road “money”. All students are accompanied and supervised on the job-site by a New Road School job coach. The level of involvement from the job coach varies depending on the individual progress and abilities displayed by each student.
Students at New Road School can benefit from working in the community as it will allow them to develop a positive work ethic and the social skills needed to become independent adults and productive employees. We try and match the student to the job setting based on their interests and abilities to ensure a successful experience.
Sample Off-campus Job Assignments
- Charlie’s Pizzeria
- Leisure Park
- 5 Guys Burgers
- Breeders Association
- Atlanta Bread
Pathways to Independence
Pathways to Independence is a program designed specifically for students ages 18-21, who have completed their senior year of high school. The program encompasses tools to help each student grow towards becoming an independent person and move towards the transition to adult life.
The Pathways to Independence program is a combination of on campus jobs, off campus jobs (approximately 5 times per week), and Pathways course work which includes:
This class teaches the student how to figure out wages, compute hours worked, buy food, clothes, etc., manage finances, budgeting, banking, as well as other life skills relating to money. In addition, students will be managing the money they earn using New Road paychecks. They will have to make deposits into the Corner Bank, write checks for their monthly bills, and accurately balance their check registers.
Oral Communications & Writing
This class teaches life skills based on good communication and writing. Some of the topics covered are:
- Writing business letters and resumes
- Filling out job applications
- Using time cards
- Filling our business forms
- Finding a job using varied tools
- Interviewing skills
- Communicating with the public
- School to Work reflective log
This class focuses on getting to know oneself. Each student will be creating a Transitional Portfolio filled with personal information specific to their experiences, likes/dislikes, strengths/weaknesses, school and job experiences, etc. Some of the topics covered will be:
- Goal setting
- Handling stress and change
- Community awareness
- Getting a job
- Keeping a job
- Decision making
- Employability skills
- Organizational skills/daily planners
Goals for Pathways to Independence
- To provide opportunities for each student to gain workplace skills and become an employable adult
- To teach various functional academics keeping in mind the needs of each student
- To help each student identify his/her goals and to guide them towards achievement of their individual goals
- To build confidence and self-esteem in students in order to advocate for themselves as they transition into adulthood
- To help each student gain an understanding of his/her strengths/weaknesses, likes/dislikes, and what talents they possess
All of the components of the PATHWAYS TO INDEPENDENCE program work together to provide each student with all of the tools to be successful upon their departure from New Road School.
Bridges to Success
A separate program component in Pathways is available to those students who meet the criteria of certain eligibility requirements. Students may have the opportunity to enroll for one course per semester at Ocean County College and attend class during the New Road School day. This unique opportunity allows a student to take a class and return back to New Road for support and assistance with assignments.
- Students are guided in developing necessary skills such as note taking, organization, accommodations, test taking, self-advocacy, and communicating with professors.
- Students receive exposure to the process of college applications and navigating a college campus.
- Students are transported to and from Ocean County College with the support of a staff member. Additionally, staff assist the student in completion of homework assignments, papers, and studying for tests.
The goal of this program is to fully acclimate the student to the college campus as well as the rigors and expectations of course work. When a student leaves New Road School at 21, the hope is that he/she will be fully prepared to handle the college experience independently.