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Former Woodside/Wenona School houses alternative students of Bay City Public Schools.

NEW HOME for Alternative Students Gears Up for School Year

Bay City Eastern, Reviving an Old School Name, Takes Over From Wenona

July 14, 2019       Leave a Comment
By: Dave Rogers

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The newly re-named Bay City Eastern High, latest version of the Bay City District's alternative school, is housed in the old Woodside elementary school. The school seeks to serve a specialized population once educated through the adult education program virtually de-funded over the past quarter century.

This restructuring aims to address the 20 percent of students who have "fallen through the cracks," failing to graduate with their classes.

Eastern Principal Ryan Boon told WSGW Radio teachers will work with students who may be at different learning levels when it comes to subjects like math and social studies.

Boon explains: "We are an alternative high school that will give an exceptional learning opportunity to students who have fallen behind in credits or who need a different smaller setting to help them learn and progress in their education."

Boon added there's an on-line credit recovery program allowing students to make up classes they may have missed, so they can get their diploma

Each student will have use of a Chromebook computer and receive free breakfast and lunch daily.

According to Kid's Count of the Annie E. Casey Foundation, here are an estimated 4.9 million young adults ages 16-24 in America who are neither in work nor school.* Of these, there are estimated to be as many as 3 million youth living in poverty who are not in education, employment or training.

Research by the local non-profit School-to-Work Pathways, shows an estimated 4,000 young people under age 22 in the mid-Michigan are in that category -- neither at work nor in school.

According to Public School Review, for the 2018-19 school year, there are 256 top alternative public schools in Michigan, serving 41,776 students.

Alternative schools aim to help students whose needs may not be successfully met in regular schools.

Students who attend alternative schools and may be at risk of educational failure (as indicated by poor grades, truancy, disruptive behavior, pregnancy, or similar factors associated with temporary or permanent withdrawal from school).

Minority enrollment is 36% of the student body (majority Black), which is more than the Michigan state average of 32%.

The student:teacher ratio of 21:1 is more than the state average of 18:1.

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Dave Rogers

Dave Rogers is a former editorial writer for the Bay City Times and a widely read,
respected journalist/writer in and around Bay City.
(Contact Dave Via Email at

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