Education Matters: Home Economics Classes Evolve

CABOT, Ark. - It wasn't too long ago that home economics classes kept their focus strictly on subjects like cooking, sewing and how to care for a baby.

But the program has now evolved and is branching out to give students an even bigger perspective on what happens after they graduate.

At Cabot High School you'll find both boys and girls taking home economics. They're learning how to sew things like pajamas and pillow cases. Cooking is another lesson for them.

"I would've never been able to learn how to cook without it because I learn so much from there," says Hailey Copeland, a Senior.

With the class going through a different kind of "course" over the years, teachers are now adding home interior design. Students create architectural layouts and plans to decorate a house. Financial literacy is another topic.

"We do checks. We learn how to do taxes and how to do the forms," Hailey explains.

They tackle the subjects of credit cards and bank accounts in lessons about managing money. Students like Hailey are "spending" time in a money management class where the "payout" is well "worth" it after high school.

"We learn not to do that from the beginning so we don't have credit card debt," she adds.

Then there's health and nutrition, where the students use a tool to calculate body fat.

The Family Consumer Sciences Department is the new "Home Economics," keeping up with the times.

"It's not about what all happens in the home, it's life in general and everywhere. And we have lots of boys in our classes now," says Jayme Nyborg, Family Consumer Sciences Teacher.

Students even get a headstart on internship opportuniuties. They're taking advantage of gaining experience at the elementary school next door.

"Going off on my own in a few months and going into the teaching program, all that stuff is just really coming together and is going to help me," says Ashley Chandler, a Senior.

Taking these courses early on is paving a pathway for success and it's "tailored" to their needs.

If students take three units of their classes with four additional electives, they earn an honor cord on graduation day.

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