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The Prowl

Fire Extinguished?

BURNING+BRIGHT.+Here+is+the+Certificate+of+Completion+Ceremony%2C+held+on+June+5th%2C+where+our+future+EMT%E2%80%99s%2C+firefighters%2C+and+nurses+are+given+certificates+of+achievement.++The+boys+sitting+to+the+left+make+up+the+Fire+Science+class%2C+who+have+just+endured+a+long+year+of+being+pushed+to+their+physical+and+mental+limits.+A+perfect+way+to+end+the+year%2C+the+ceremony+acknowledges+their+hard+work+and+gives+them+closure+for+a+school+year+full+of+bonding.+%E2%80%9CI+hated+half+of+the+people+in+my+class%3B+now+I+treat+everyone+in+there+like+a+brother.%E2%80%9D+said+Joe+Gunn.
BURNING BRIGHT. Here is the Certificate of Completion Ceremony, held on June 5th, where our future EMT’s, firefighters, and nurses are given certificates of achievement.  The boys sitting to the left make up the Fire Science class, who have just endured a long year of being pushed to their physical and mental limits. A perfect way to end the year, the ceremony acknowledges their hard work and gives them closure for a school year full of bonding. “I hated half of the people in my class; now I treat everyone in there like a brother.” said Joe Gunn.

BURNING BRIGHT. Here is the Certificate of Completion Ceremony, held on June 5th, where our future EMT’s, firefighters, and nurses are given certificates of achievement. The boys sitting to the left make up the Fire Science class, who have just endured a long year of being pushed to their physical and mental limits. A perfect way to end the year, the ceremony acknowledges their hard work and gives them closure for a school year full of bonding. “I hated half of the people in my class; now I treat everyone in there like a brother.” said Joe Gunn.

Tomi Lane

Tomi Lane

BURNING BRIGHT. Here is the Certificate of Completion Ceremony, held on June 5th, where our future EMT’s, firefighters, and nurses are given certificates of achievement. The boys sitting to the left make up the Fire Science class, who have just endured a long year of being pushed to their physical and mental limits. A perfect way to end the year, the ceremony acknowledges their hard work and gives them closure for a school year full of bonding. “I hated half of the people in my class; now I treat everyone in there like a brother.” said Joe Gunn.

Tomi Lane and Brian Wong

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Despite the valiant efforts to save the beloved fire science, it is being cut from next year’s classes.

As one of the CTE classes that has lost funding, Fire Science is taking a big cut. Most CTE programs, which have more students, will survive the one to two period cut, but, as many know, Fire Science only has two periods.

“We’re supporting a lot of different CTE programs that more people will take,” said Mr. Howell, principal.

Fire Science will be dearly missed by students who looked forward to joining the “boys’ club,” but also because it allowed students to enroll in the fire academy directly after graduation, provided they pass the articulation exam.

The biggest loss of all is that of Mark Ferreira, the Fire Science teacher, whose mode of instruction was greatly appreciated by his students.

“Chief is single-handedly the best teacher I’ve ever had,” said Joe Gunn, a current student in the class. “Not only that, but he doesn’t treat us like students, he treats us as adults, which I haven’t gotten from any other instructor.”

As of now, Chief Ferreira will not be returning to Sonora next year, but he still has plans to return to Fire Science in the Fall, just in a different capacity.

”I want to go back to college and get my bachelor’s degree,” said Ferreira. “I’ll get a teaching credential with as many supplementals as I can and come back and teach at Sonora High School.”

Chief Ferreira’s teaching method is composed of two parts: mental and physical. The students spend a portion of the two periods  in the classroom, being introduced to a topic, and a portion outside, putting their new knowledge to use.  

Chief Ferreira used the example of a ladder: they learn the parts and then they go outside and learn to carry, load and climb the ladder.

For students who aren’t academically inclined or do not wish to go to college, CTE courses correspond to careers and offer a direct transition to the workforce, so the loss of Fire Science will be felt by many boys who were hoping to get a feel for firefighting.

“The course itself teaches a curriculum that helps me with my career pull and opens me up to a wide variety of job opportunities,” said Gunn. “It is something practical and something that has really helped me out when it comes to direction.”

In order to save their gateway to the workforce, students took an entire week to visit each class in hopes of recruiting enough students to save Fire Science.

“I tried to recruit people,” said Gunn. “I personally went to classes for a week straight for five periods a day.”

There may be hope yet, as the school is looking into any alternative, including Columbia College stepping in to fund Fire Science.

“Efforts are ongoing, and we’re trying as hard as we can to save it,” said Principal Howell.

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Fire Extinguished?