The Competency Program provides a safe place for students seeking an alternative path to a diploma where they can make connections and improve confidence in order to increase their opportunities for success in the world beyond the classroom.
The Competency program meets for a minimum of three hours daily. The morning session will be academics from 8:30 -11:30 AM; the afternoon portion of the program is from 12-3:00 PM and will be a time for students to either go to work, take 3rd or 4th hour electives, volunteer, attend therapy sessions, participate in enrichment activities, or make progress on missing work. Students will be required to provide evidence of completing a total of 15 hours of time per week in the afternoon portion.
Work/Volunteer/Electives/Therapy/Enrichment/Make Up Time:
You will be expected to have a job or volunteer during your time in the Competency Program. If you do not have a job, you are expected to volunteer, take electives in the HS, participate in enrichment activities, or attend in the afternoon to make up for missing work or class time. You can also get time credit for attending therapy outside of school. You are required to invest 15 hours per week in any combination of these categories. Teachers will communicate with employers as to work updates.
Participation and Attendance:
There is a clear connection between attendance and academic achievement; thus, attendance is mandatory. You are still a student at Waunakee Community High School and must abide by the same attendance standards (see Waunakee Community School Board Policy 430). This includes being in class on time and staying for the entire class period, as well as providing a Doctor’s note for medical absences. A failure to do so may result in truancy. For seniors, 90% attendance is required to participate in the high school graduation ceremony. Your graduation will be determined by your Attendance (20%), Work Completion (40%), Job Requirements (20%), Class Discussions (10%), Time Management (10%).
During the program, students will work towards successfully achieving mastery in the 12 focus areas (See Competency Academics page). Progress will be measured using the Planning Reflection Rubric and communicated to the team on a quarterly basis. Basic writing is an integral part of the program and growth is expected. Below you will find the Competency Expectations for the school year.
Students are expected to eat at home. If they want to get lunch at the high school, they must walk over to the school and bring it back given it would be part of their scheduled break time. All Competency students can get lunch from 11:30-12:00.
Progress Report Checklist:
Every 6 weeks students will meet with their assistant principal, social worker, counselor, and teachers to discuss progress and expectations. This is a nice way to check in, gauge progress, and discuss ways we can better support student needs.
*Please read and follow the student guidelines mentioned in the Waunakee High School Student Handbook. We expect you to be respectful to your peers in the classroom. Since we will be going out in the community frequently, there will be a greater expectation of good behavior. Since the people we meet may be future employers, we want to set a good example while we interact with them.
Program Entrance Checklist- Student MUST COMPLETE before entrance into the Competency Program:
“My Life’s Blueprint” Competency
5 Journal Prompts
Interview with TLC Staff
Non-Negotiables (Things that may get you removed from the program):
Excused or unexcused absences that fall below 90% attendance.
Failure to actively progress towards completion of the program requirements. This includes not participating in group activities, not completing the assigned competencies, not participating in volunteer/mentoring work, not participating in SEL activities (without prior approval from staff).
Chronic inappropriate behavior and language.
Being disrespectful to people and property.
Substance use: including tobacco, alcohol, or other drug use on school premises, as well as coming to school under the influence of drugs or alcohol. School premises also include any field trips we take.
Student Removal from the Competency Program:
If a student is removed from the program, they may be placed back into the HS.
If a student brings drugs or alcohol to school, the student will be expelled.
Competency Academics for the year:
Some of the activities will be independent, however most require group participation.
Year Long Projects-
- Journal Writing
- Citizen Math
- FoolProof - Financial Literacy
- Year Long Group Project
- Madison College Application
- Inquiry Project 1.0
- Inquiry Project 2.0
- Documentary Review
- Earth Day
- Writing Project
- Buying a Car
- Art Show
- Mental Health
Competency Program Admission Steps
**Students will only be admitted at the beginning of the Semester (September and January)**
- At the end of the first or third quarter, a student can be referred as a candidate for the Competency Program.
- Attendance - Is Attendance at 90%?
- If not, attendance must be 90% from the time of referral to end of the semester.
- If yes, continue to Step 3.
- Informational Meeting with Student and Parents/Guardians
- Review Contract and Expectations
- 8:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. - Academics
- 12:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. - Work/Volunteering/Electives/Therapy/Additional Academic Supports
12:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. - 15 hours/week minimum
- Phone Policy - Students will place phone on their shelf. Phone breaks will be built into the day.
- Work Completion Expectations
- Attendance Procedures
- Removal Procedures
- Expulsion Procedures
- If Student and Parents/Guardians agree, continue to Step 4.
- Complete Entrance Work Samples
- Interview with Alternative Education Staff Completed
- Staff believes this student will succeed in the Competency Program.
- MANDATORY Parent/Guardian and Student Entrance Meeting with Alternative Education Staff.
- Parents/Guardians and Student have met with the Alternative Education Staff.
**Student is placed in the Competency Program at the beginning of the next semester.**
Year Long Projects-
Year Long Projects-
Year Long Projects-
*The Competency Program uses a 3-year rotating course plan.
There are a number of scholarship opportunities for students at Waunakee Community High School. If you would like more information about possible scholarship opportunities, schedule a meeting with your counselor or click HERE to see the Waunakee High School Scholarship website.
The Waunakee Community School District is committed to ensuring that all students and families can participate in their school communities regardless of a family’s financial situation and ability to pay. Scholarships or payment plans are available to any student who has been approved for the free/reduced meal program, and may be available to any student whose families have a financial need due to unique circumstances.
Please contact Teri Reible at 608-849-2000 to learn more about these opportunities. If you need assistance in a language other than English, please call the district interpreter and translator at 608-849-2000 option 2.
Click HERE to see the Waunakee Student Financial Assistance website.
The High School Teaching and Learning Center (TLC)
is located at 101 School Drive, Waunakee, WI 53597.