Approximately 1,200 plus students attend Prairie High School each day. For some, it’s a day packed full of classes and for others, just a couple. I hear talk in the hallways about “why are we learning?” this and “I would rather be at home.”

Real-world opportunities rarely arise in the school day unless say there is a job shadow or internship. But for some students, real-world experiences is all they know thanks to Iowa BIG. Iowa BIG is an initiative- community- based high school located in downtown New-Bo and a second location in Marion.

At Iowa BIG, students have the opportunity to do something they care about through projects and seminars. Project range from science related to art related but they all benefit the community through community partners. Seminars are where students go to class. Through both projects and seminars, that is how normal school credits are earned.

Instead of solving real-world problems, students are sitting in the classroom solving textbook problems. And that’s whats wrong with our country today.

Kyle Duane Kazimour, a student at Iowa Big said: “the problem I have with public high school in America is truly the repetition of solving problems that, 1- I already knew the answer to and 2- problems someone else already knows the answer to.”

Students need to be prepared for the world that is today’s world with advancing technology and advanced skills such as collaboration and complex communication. At Prairie, I believe they are trying to do that but through very meticulous and non hands on lessons which lead to students not paying attention.

Overall, the public school system has its flaws but if more opportunities like Iowa Big arise, students would be more prepared for today’s world.

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