Opportunity Room offers students fresh perspective


Last updated 6/3/2015 at 10:32am

The school board learned how students referred to the “Opportunity Room” get a new lease on life, at their meeting Monday night.

Tami Nichols, who short circuits students referred to the program because of their activities, had put a spark back in their lives by using a book and teaching tool called “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens.”

Nichols, catching the students before they face more serious consequences, has had good success showing them that they all possess sometimes hidden talents and abilities.

Nichols provided an outline of the “7 Habits” to give board members an idea of what can happen in the Opportunity Room.

The 7 tips are: Be proactive; Begin with the end in mind; Put first things first, Think win-win; Seek first to understand, then to be understood; Synergize; and Sharpen the saw.

A student might be referred to the Opportunity Room by the principal for missing too much school, acting out in class, or a variety of other reasons.

Nichols said she averages about four students a day and has been active in the district’s in school suspension program for 11 years.

“I try to help students see that there are simple things in life they can do to help themselves,” Nichols said Tuesday. “Students need to understand they have power in their lives, and decisions they make are important,” she added.

Nichols might have a student for a period, a day or longer, “depending on the circumstances,” Principal Brandon Byers noted.

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