Pirates Academy effective in helping struggling students

Some students have been struggling on getting caught up with school and have struggled on passing classes. These students have the option of participating in Pirates Academy. 

Pirates Academy is a program at Bay Port for students who are behind on credits, that would typically not be able to graduate. Senior Ty Grunwald participates in Pirate’s Academy and he personally believes it’s a good feature for Bay Port to have.

“I enjoy going to [Pirates Academy],” Ty said. “It’s definitely better than going to normal school”.

Students in the program go to the SMT building near Bay Port, and learn there instead. 

“I like going to SMT for Pirates Academy because it does not even feel like school. Our class is only an hour and thirty minutes,” Ty said. “It’s just one room with recliners and chairs that we can sit on to do our work.”

These students focus more on life skills rather than learning normal core classes such as social studies and science.

“Our teacher Mr. Biar teaches us stuff like how to invest money, loans, how to rent an apartment, and how to do taxes,” Ty said. “One big thing we learned about was retirement and the different types of retirement.”

These students are able to focus more on topics that can help them after school, rather than different electives.

“One thing I like is that I can always get one-on-one time with the teacher if I need help with anything,” Ty said, “Mr. Biar is the kind of teacher that you can always go to if you have problems with anything. He will try to help you the best he can. If not, he will find someone that can help you.” 

Pirates Academy is helpful for many because it gives students one last chance to graduate from high school without having to take an extra year. 

“I think most of the students would try to do credit recovery or summer school if Pirates Academy was not a thing,” Ty said. “Having this extra opportunity is really good.”

Every Tuesday, students have to do volunteer work at the homeless shelter. They help do chores such as cleaning the cafeteria, unloading food trucks, organizing donations, and making beds.  

“The main thing I like about being in Pirates Academy is that I’m able to learn all of these life skills at a young age,” Ty said.

Students who have been struggling on graduating are finding this program helpful. It allows them to have the possibility of not having to take an extra year of high school.