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REALL Simulation a Success

Reality Enrichment and Life Lessons for THS Seniors

Bryan+Adcock%2C+Executive+Director+of+Ozark+Action+Inc.+in+West+Plains%2C+introduces+the+REALL+Simulation+to+the+THS+Seniors
Bryan Adcock, Executive Director of Ozark Action Inc. in West Plains, introduces the REALL Simulation to the THS Seniors

Bryan Adcock, Executive Director of Ozark Action Inc. in West Plains, introduces the REALL Simulation to the THS Seniors

Bryan Adcock, Executive Director of Ozark Action Inc. in West Plains, introduces the REALL Simulation to the THS Seniors

April Earls, Copy Editor

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The REALL Simulation (Reality Enrichment and Life Lessons)  came to Thayer High School on Wednesday, September 6th, 2017. The simulation was sponsored by Ozark Action Inc. in West Plains, Missouri. “I would like to thank all of the volunteers for helping with the simulation this year”, said Mr. Tommy Lowery, THS At-Risk/Credit Recovery Coordinator.

The local volunteers were: Steve Biffle  and Stephen Bryant – Thayer Police Department, Cindy Callahan – City of Thayer, Karen Cotham – Thayer School District Board Member, Konnie Haney – Community First Bank, Carol Pitts – Thayer High School Librarian, Myles Smith – Howell-Oregon Electric Cooperative, Trena Spears – Modern Woodmen of America and Jared Underwood – Ozarks Hills Insurance, who is also a Thayer School District Board Member.

Lowery would also like to thank the following: Ozark Action Inc. of West Plains, Missouri for helping bring the REALL simulation to Thayer High School, Mr.  Marcus Orf and the Thayer FFA Chapter for helping to set the gym up for the simulation, Mrs. Shelley Underwood and the Thayer FCCLA Chapter for helping to bring in community volunteers, Mrs. Connie Ward for the wonderful meal served to the volunteers, and all the students who participated in the simulation.  “The students had exemplary behavior and cooperation.  Their representation of THS is to be commended”, Lowery stated.

The seniors had a lot to say about the simulation:

“It opened up my eyes to what life is going to be like after I graduate and I learned that I should finish school and always think before making major decisions,” said Jordan Burgett

Christian Hirsch thought the event was really great and showed him the result of good and bad choices. “The simulation taught me what my choices could lead to in my future.”

“I learned I need to go to college and get a job”, said Jessica Case.

Jordan Miller said it taught him what the world would be like when he gets out of school some day.

All the seniors seemed to learn a few things. For example, they learned to always ask for receipts when they pay something off, or when they buy something. They also learned how hard it was to take care of kids and pay for child support. The first time through the simulation, they were given a paper with a list of very poor decisions. Examples of these decisions were: dropping out of high school, having a child before marriage or being financially ready, and drinking while driving, which ended with a DWI. During the simulation, students had to pay all of their bills, take their children to daycare, pay for their groceries, and get a job. Most students agreed that this was a very difficult task to do and most students ended up owing the bank, not having enough money for food (even with food stamps), and even getting evicted from their home.

During the second time through, they were given good decisions. Examples of these were: graduating high school, going to college, planning before having children, getting married at a financially good time, and having a steady job. “Unlike the first time through, this was a lot easier to get things done”, said Madison Deree.

In this simulation the students started out with money, instead of having none. They also had a few thousand in their savings account as well. When they got their check from their job, it was more than ten times the amount as the first one. “With this, I could actually pay all of my bills on time and I could pay all the groceries I needed for the month. It was also a lot easier to take care of my kids and take them to daycare than the first time”, said Madison Kuczek

I think the REALL Simulation event had very positive effects on all of the seniors. It has taught us to think before making decisions and asking whether it will help us, or hurt us. I encourage Ozark Action to keep coming back every year to help kids improve their decision making process for the next chapter in their lives.”

— August Earls-THS Senior

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REALL Simulation a Success