Waterloo students find benefits of school in the mall - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Waterloo students find benefits of school in the mall


What if you went to school in the mall?

Some Waterloo high school students are finding the non-traditional school setting helpful.

"No bells, no whistles, no pep bands. It's just quiet so when they come in they work and then they leave," said Rachelle Brown, Crossroads Connections Instructor.

The Crossroads Connections program found a home in the Crossroads Mall in Waterloo about a year ago.


Classes are online and the students only need to show up to take tests. The students also help Brown create a class schedule for when they need additional help.

"I mean we could say you know we have lots of opportunities, but if it doesn't fit them, it just doesn't," said Brown. 

Darcell Stokes says this school fits her because she can focus.

"I think about if I were at a public school I wouldn't have gotten as much done as I would have now," said Stokes. 

She says she didn't want to go to public school, and this program even gives her an opportunity to work in the mall.

"But I'm glad it's here because it's closer to my job. I work at J.C. Penny's," said Stokes. 


Crossroads Connections was an idea from superintendent Dr. Gary Norris.  

Officials say this program partially was set up in the mall to give the students an opportunity to be around the business community, all while attending class.

For Stokes' parents, they appreciate the one-on-one attention their daughter is getting and the excitement it's creating.

"College and then pursue the particular profession she chooses. Darcell can excel in anything she chooses to do," said Darryl Stokes, father. 


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