The COVID-19 Pandemic has put a strain on students’ academic routines and, in some cases, has put significant hardships on students and their families.
At Pioneer High School, a program called Jobs for Nevada’s
Graduates, or J4NG, is combating these challenges head on. The program has
placed a priority on staying in contact with each student to help the students
manage their academics and personal needs and is dedicated to ensuring students
have the resources that they need to succeed, especially during this
Rachel Raat, Pioneer J4NG specialist, has kept in contact
with all of her students in her program. Raat noticed that many of her students
were struggling and with additional coaching and providing necessary resources
she has been able to help students navigate the new educational platform. A few
of her students work and some of those students have essential jobs and have
worked tirelessly to support our community as well as succeed academically.
For some students, she was able to guide students through
Google Classroom and emailing teachers. In other cases, she was able to help
the student’s family with other resources like food, basic household necessities,
financial support, social/emotional support and much more.
Raat collects data on the students’ progress, needs and
attendance every week and reports back to the J4NG headquarters and to PHS to
help evaluate the specific needs of her students. J4NG then provides academic,
financial and other support that is specific to the students at Pioneer High
The recent change to online learning has been a challenge
for the students and for Raat to monitor and continue to get accurate data.
“Online schooling has been a huge learning curve for the
students as well as myself,” Raat said, “but the staff at Pioneer High School
and Jobs for Nevada’s Graduates have helped tremendously with providing
resources and support to the students and me to ensure an easier transition to
She continues by saying, “This sudden lifestyle and routine change has not been easy to cope with; I strive to equip my students with the tools they need to be successful mentally and physically through this pandemic.”
Jazmin Estes, a PHS senior, is one of approximately 57 of
her potential graduating class who has shown impressive maturity and concern to
continue her education despite this global pandemic. We are proud of her
communication, questions and willingness to adjust and adapt to the challenges
Raat says that her students have been optimistic during the
COVID-19 pandemic and they are willing to continue working hard through
distance learning. The students are keeping busy but she says she and the
students are looking forward to going back to school.
“I’m proud of my students and the great work they are doing.
Their enthusiasm through this life changing experience has continued to impress
me. We are all excited to be back together again and resume school at Pioneer