ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — The start of a new school year is upon us which means summer school is nearing the end. That includes programs from the Rochester City School District to help get students back on track. However, one program in specific is not only helping kids get on track but also getting them college ready.
Finishing out your senior year of high school without actually graduating can be a tough pill to swallow. Northeast Prep Senior, Andrew Simmons found himself in that exact spot a few months ago. Luckily, Simmons was able to enroll in the Rochester City School District’s program that hosts summer school at St. John Fisher University. He said not only is he set to graduate high school this month, he has his mind set on bigger aspirations.
“Walking around to each building was kind of like ‘Hey, I could do this for college,’” Simmons said. “I’m still asking myself what I want to do but definitely with my experience here, probably college.”
RCSD Assistant Principal, Anthony Rodriguez said the district’s new partnership with St. John Fisher gives students even more reason to dream big.
“This definitely served as an opportunity for kids to know that there are people who want to see them be successful,” Rodriguez said.
Ava Reyez is a rising senior at the School of the Arts and decided to take summer school courses to get ahead for next school year.
“Being here definitely kept me occupied, it definitely kept me motivated to finish my classes and put me on a good track for next year. The whole experience of being here with the teachers, it was really fun, I enjoyed it a lot and I would do it again if I had the opportunity,” Reyez said. “I used my time wisely to get everything I need to do done and really focused on what I came here to do. I didn’t let summer things distract me from what I came here for.”
Reyez said being on the college campus opposed to her home school’s classroom gave her new insight into what she wants to do post-graduation.
“I loved it here. I figured being here and talking to people made me actually want to apply here and come to college at St. John Fisher,” Reyez said.
Destiny Delapaz is also a rising senior at the School of the Arts and chose to go to summer school to get ahead so she would have more time to devote to her afterschool job during the traditional school year.
“I get to be at a college. This is really cool because if I took summer school at my school, I know it would have been totally different and I would be totally unmotivated,” Delapaz said.
30 RCSD seniors who otherwise would not have received a diploma are projected to graduate at the end of the month.
RCSD’s St. John Fisher program is one of one many summer school programs throughout the district. Most individual schools have their own programs, some with specific programs geared towards STEM learning.