Cathie Rebelo, Director of Vocational Programs
The Career Programs offered at Tri-County are broad enough in scope to appeal to almost any student. Programs are offered in the building trades, auto trades, service occupations, and various technical fields. Instruction is offered in a variety of technologies by teachers who are experienced and licensed in the field they teach. This allows instructors to teach the practical, hands-on skills, as well as the theory behind the application.
Class sizes at Tri-County are conducive to an excellent learning environment, with a 15 to 1 student/teacher ratio in vocational-technical classes and 18 to 1 in academic classes.
Tri-County operates on an alternating week schedule, with students spending their academic week in eight periods of traditional high school course work and the alternate week in vocational/technical studies.
Learning By Doing
Each of Tri-County's 16 Career Programs offers its students unique opportunities to apply what they've learned to projects within the community. Cosmetology students work with clients in the school's teaching salon, while Early Education students design and implement a curriculum for the Tri-County Children's Center. Students in the Carpentry, Electrical Wiring Technology, and Plumbing and Hydronic Heating programs previously worked together to build a three-bedroom, two-bathroom home in Franklin.
The real-world application of skills is a valuable part of the career technical learning experience. Students acquire professional experience while still in high school. Working within the community gives students a greater sense of ownership and responsibility. Their communication skills often improve, as does their ability to lead others.
Career Exploratory Program for Freshmen
Every student enrolled in the ninth grade at Tri-County participates in the Exploratory Program. The purpose of the Exploratory Program is to give each student the opportunity to investigate a variety of career opportunities to determine personal skills, abilities, and interests. Each student will explore nine different career programs. The student chooses six programs of interest on their application. Tri-County will select three more to investigate. Each student will explore at least two non-traditional career areas. Guidance counselors work closely with the students and the vocational instructors to ensure that the exploratory experience is a positive learning experience for each student.
Each exploratory is graded and is figured in the student's exploratory average. In January of freshman year, students select their top three choices for a vocational major. Program choices are awarded based on overall exploratory average, exploratory teacher recommendation, and space availability.