Julie Krackow, left, and Tanya Sanderfoot present a proposal for a new off-site pilot program to the School Board in October, including members David Olson, second from left, and John Sperger.
Julie Krackow, left, and Tanya Sanderfoot present a proposal for a new off-site pilot program to the School Board in October, including members David Olson, second from left, and John Sperger.

A new pilot program for students with severe behavioral issues is designed to keep kids within Ripon while moving them out of traditional classrooms.

And it could expand further, if the need arises.

Launched just over three weeks ago, the new learning site for a maximum of five elementary students was approved by the School Board at its Oct. 16 meeting.

Called Blossom Alternative Program — it’s housed inside St. Catherine of Siena Catholic Church on Blossom Street — the Ripon Area School District hopes the program can keep students on track academically while allowing for more individualized care and support.

“The kids have been very excited by the opportunity to have a new school created just for them,” said Barlow Park/Journey Elementary Principal Tanya Sanderfoot, who was instrumental in the realization of the program. “They have been empowered to make the classroom their own by adding decorations and making requests for changes in the schedule.

“Overall, the students seemed to have found a new sense of calm.”

Read the full story in the Dec. 14, 2017 edition of the Ripon Commonwealth Press.