New School in Shepherd Gives Students an Advanced Way of Learning

Students in Northern Michigan are back to school and one high school in Shepherd is changing its teaching methods.

It’s one of just three FlexTech schools in the state and they are ditching old school traditions and moving into hands-on, project-based learning.

FlexTech High School prepares students for life after high school.

Shepherd now has the third FlexTech High School in Michigan and it is teaching them different ways to learn, grow and create.

“You still have the same state of Michigan graduation requirements but we’re just attacking them in a different way,” Philip Janis, Principal.

FlexTech schools focus on project-based learning.

“In a normal setting there might be quizzes, worksheets or tests and we try to replace that with more hands-on learning by connecting different subjects together or working in groups,” says Janis.

They focus on engaging students by working hands-on.

“We are getting students motivated and excited by just driving everything through the curriculum we’re required to do but also by combining their interests into it,” says Janis.

This school focuses on giving kids a brand new way of learning and one of those ways is giving them each a Chromebook that they can do their work on at school but also take it home for their homework.

“They need to know how information is presented to them in an online format and how to be able to submit things, create and edit on a format like that,” says Janis.

They’re offering students a more real life way of learning.

“You’re not just looking in books you have more resources that you can go to,” Ashley Fairchild, freshman. “We got the Chromebooks our first day of school and we get to keep it until we graduate.”

From projects to working in groups, this school takes pride in the small classroom size to give more attention to students.

“I ask a lot of questions and I like to have somebody there that can answer them so I can get stuff done and always have someone there to have my questions answered for me,” Samantha Kalis, freshman.