This Vocational Adjustment Class is a Texas Education Agency approved work / academic class designed to transition students into a successful employment outcome. The course is a modified elective class offered to Special Education students. A common name given by many school districts in the state of Texas is the Work Experience Class. It may be designated other like-sounding course names. The Vocational Adjustment Coordinator interviews the student and gathers initial background information to conduct a verification of employment. Upon this verification, the student and parent review and agree to a VAC student contract. Because this course denotes a unique change in instructional placement, every student enrolled in the program must complete placement through his or her annual ARD / revision ARD. Within the ARD, an employment goal is added to the IEP and updated periodically based upon the student's performance. During the ARD, the student's employment status and performance will be reviewed. Academic training and employment experiences are combined to provide a balanced learning opportunity. Paid employment is a requirement of this instructional placement. Through successful completion of the Work Experience Class, students gain independence, career understanding and valuable employment skills. Throughout this experience, the Vocational Adjustment Coordinator (VAC) / course instructor guides and monitors the student's progress. Similar to school general coop program, the students at Plano East Senior High School within the VAC program spend one class period in the morning within an academic class. Students may leave school early as part of the employment program - based upon the number of paid-work hours completed on average each week. Each class dismissed early is the equivalent of five work hours completed per week. Students will complete a weekly work schedule and return a copy of their pay-stub to verify employment. For example, students working ten hours per week may leave school two class periods early. Individuals working fifteen hours per week can leave school three class periods early. During work program dismissal, students are expected leave campus and complete personal / academic responsibilities before attending work. Work hours are flexible to meet the needs of the employer - in accordance with school hours and labor laws.
All students are required to take the academic version of the Work Experience Class in conjunction with the employment partnership class of the same name. The Vocational Adjustment Class, as an instructional arrangement, is restricted as an elective class. Students interested in program participation must complete all content classes required for high school graduation.
Grading is based upon employer evaluations, VAC observations and classroom academic progress. Generally, students complete assignments related to career exploration, employment skills, job preparation and post-secondary educational planning. Each student receives a syllabus, course outline and student information sheet.
The instructor develops the class specifically for each student as part of an individual education program.
Individuals not in compliance to the student responsibility obligation and / or terminated from employment, may be removed from the VAC program and placed into classes throughout the day - without early dismissal from school.
Without employment, students in Special Education may take the academic class portion of the Work Experience Class as a stand-alone elective.
Specific course programming and implementation will vary between school districts. The information shared regarding the Work Experience Class is for informational purposes and not inclusive of the Vocational Adjustment Class in its' entirety.
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