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Editorial: Opportunities abound for students in Farmington schools

There is no shortage of learning opportunities in Farmington, and they come in all shapes and sizes. You don't have to look any farther than this week's edition of the Independent to see that.

Consider the construction trades program in District 917. Featured on page 14A, the program has for years helped students, including many from Farmington, learn to work better with their hands. It's taught them the ins and outs of a real construction site and prepared them better for some aspect of the life that awaits them after high school, whether that means going into a construction trade themselves or simply knowing how to make some repairs around their own home.

Or, consider the students who formed a Yellow Ribbon chapter at Farmington High School, one of the first of its kind anywhere. They saw a need and they stepped forward to fill it. And while the lessons they are learning can't be measured with a standardized test, they are certainly coming to appreciate the value of giving back to their community.

There are more stories like these: The Christian Life student who spent a week immersed in state government as a page at the capitol. The FHS student who earned a her way to the Business Professionals of America national competition, only to turn it down for a spot in the chorus of her school's production of Fiddler on the Roof. Even the play itself.

There has been a lot of talk lately about creating individualized education opportunities for students. The focus has been on providing iPads for every student, and there are certainly some compelling arguments that the popular tablets could make a difference for students, so long as they are implemented well and so long as the district can find a good way to pay for them.

In the meantime, though, there are still opportunities for students. They just need to know where to look.