Opportunities are knocking for Brookfield Local School District students! Thanks to a $1.2M grant from the Ohio Department of Education's Innovative Workforce Incentive Program (IWIP) students will soon have a lot more doors to open for their futures. The Innovative Workforce Incentive Program aligns to Ohio’s five-year strategic plan for education. Each Child, Our Future envisions that each child will see the relevance of his or her learning; be exposed to practical, real-world work settings; and begin defining his or her future during high school.
Superintendent Toby Gibson says, "It is a holistic approach to College & Career Readiness that will begin in elementary school with the hope that by the time they are in high school they have been exposed to a variety of career opportunities and are ready to decide which path they will take upon graduation."
The BLSD has mad a substantial effort over the last two years to increase the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) and Career Based learning opportunities students have access to in the district. While many of our students do go on to college following graduation, others will enter the workforce. Curriculum the district can implement and provide as a result of this grant will allow students on these pathways to be among the best in their respective fields as soon as they graduate high school.
ODE and the Governor's Office of Workforce Transformation announced the IWIP grants in January of 2020. City, local and exempted village school districts, community schools, STEM schools, educational service centers and joint vocational school districts were all able to apply for the grants. In August of 2021, the Brookfield Local School District was informed that their application request for $747,560 had been awarded. This first round of grant money will be used to establish a K-12 STEM education program where students can begin exploring careers and choosing their future paths at an early age. The elementary level will focus on STEM awareness that will then expand into problem-solving activities once students go to middle school. Once a student arrives at high school they'll be able to choose the pathway that's most interesting to them and work towards achieving that industry credential. Those students who then go on to complete the program will earn industry recognized credentials as a Certified Logistics Technician
(CLT) or as a Certified Production Technician
(CPT) with opportunities for pre-apprentice programs in manufacturing. Not only is this an incredible learning opportunity for our students right here at school, but it will also provide industries with more equipped potential employees in the future.
In November of 2021 BLSD was informed that a second round grant application of $455,003.72 had also been awarded by ODE. These grants are designed to expand upon existing credentialing programs. With the money Brookfield plans to add the Kuka Core Robot Programming and Operation
certification at the high-school level. Implementing these programs within BHS means reimaging the way our school looks. Significant work will be done in the summer of 2022 to transform the current library space into a new home for gaining valuable knowledge. The hub is surrounded with glass windows providing all students who pass by with a glimpse into their potential futures.