CAVE CITY, AR (KAIT) - A Sharp County high school is now a charter school, a distinction their principal said has helped them ensure success for all of their students.
Cave City High School Principal Mark Walling said being a charter school gives them more flexibility.
"We got seat time waiver and we've got a clock time waiver along with some other waivers on licensures and such," Walling said.
It allows the school to bus students to the University of Arkansas Community College at Batesville for welding classes and to have professors from Ozarka College teach a Certified Nursing Assistant course.
"Because some of these teachers at the colleges don't have an Arkansas teaching license but we're receiving good, quality instruction because of these people's background in the field they're in," Walling said.
This year, Cave City has 12 students in the CNA class and 10 taking welding classes.
Walling said both of the programs allow students to become licensed and work in their desired field right out of high school, whether that is so they can pay for college or as a technical career.
"The welding field right now is a great opportunity for kids," he said. "There's a lot of jobs out there and so we're proud to help those kids kind of get started in life and some of those jobs are excellent paying jobs."
Levi Hatfield is a senior at Cave City High School. He said he appreciates this opportunity to explore technical career opportunities.
"They consider that not everybody is going to be book smart, not everybody is going to go to college," Hatfield said. "They want to take those people who are a lot more hands-on because it's not just welding either, you know. There are a lot more options out there as far as what people want to do where they're outside. Not everyone wants to sit in a cubicle all day and work on paper. Some people want to get out there and get dirty and sweaty and nasty and that's my interest, kind of."
The students in the programs said they were thankful for classes in high school that can give students a head start toward a career.
"It's a stepping stone for me because when I graduate, I will go straight to the LPN program and from there onto RN and maybe BSN," senior CNA student Megan Bristow said.
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