Gateway School to Work Program

  • Program Overview: 

    The Gateway program is intended to provide students 18-22 years of age opportunities to develop their individual functional academic, vocational, social/emotional, and life skills. Through academic class work, supervised employment activities and community based social activities and real-life skills/experiences necessary to foster independent living skills unique to each individual.


    Each week will consist of 2 Academic Days, 2 Vocational/Work Days and 1 Community Experience/Group Days. Program runs from 8:30-2:15 except when indicated on district school calendar.

    Academic Day: 

    During Academic Days, students will take courses designed to maintain/increase their functional academics as they relate to real world applications. These will include consumer economics, reading/writing for success in the workplace, basic office tasks, clerical skills and job survival/success skills.


    Vocational experiences are divided into four components: exploration, assessment/training, job sites and work experience. Students that were part of the Achieve Program at NMRHS have begun these vocational experiences. Students may rotate through each component sequentially or may move back and forth between components based on skills and individual needs.

    • Exploration introduces students to many different workplace settings to help them make choices about what skills different jobs require and whether they feel that this is a career they may wish to pursue. Career exploration activities may be presented through field trips, guest speakers or job shadowing.
    • Assessment/Training takes place in the classroom and the workplace. This allows Gateway staff (job coaches, school personnel) to develop individual training objectives for students that correspond to real life work tasks they may be given in various community work settings. This may include student aptitudes, learning styles, work habits, personal and social skills as well as work tolerance and attitudes.
    • Job Sites places students in various employment settings for internships (nonpaid work experiences) within the community. These internships will be in a variety of settings that allow the student to gain entry level skills while under the close supervision of job coaches.
    • Work Experience happens when students have found a preferred worksite and may include both internship and paid employment. Supervision is gradually faded when students are able to handle both the social expectations and job skills required to maintain gainful employment.

    Community Experience Days: 

    During the weekly community experience days students continue to work on targeted Activities for Daily Living in real world settings. These activities can be academic, social or vocational in nature. Typical experiences will focus on accessing community services and resources such as post office, government offices, banking, medical/dental, shopping or recreational. On Community Experience Days related service providers can provide needed group or individual therapies/services. Partnerships with other area programs are being sought for recreational and social activities.