Manual’s new addition to learning


Amberlee Tate

There is a new academic enrichment program at Manual, called the Manual Achievement Center (MAC), starting this school year.

Previously called the learning lab, the MAC is a space for students needing academic assistance at any level, or just a quiet space to study or think.

“Students can have access to teachers, peer tutors, online research tools and we’ll also have U of L tutors,” said one of the founders, resource teacher Mina Todd.

The MAC is a combination of efforts from multiple teachers and staff members. It combines Manual’s old academic enrichment program, Academic Enrichment for Manual Students (AEMS), and the learning lab into one space.

“We’ve always had a great team of people that work on ways to better our school and ways to benefit more students,” Todd said. “This idea was born after a lot of conversation and seeing needs and places where we could do a little bit better in the school.”

There are many opportunities for students to visit the MAC, including during their Study Skills block.

“There are different ways that students can come to the MAC one being from their study skills. Teachers can send three at a time after having a purposeful conversation with the student about why they need to go to the MAC and what they will be working on. Or if a student has trouble in a certain class their teacher can contact me and I’ll get them started with a peer tutor or a teacher,” Todd said. “Students need to be here with a purpose.”

The new addition to the school is thought to be beneficial and the students and staff involved in making it happen are very hopeful for its success.

“I think that it’s going to be very beneficial because of how organized it is and how concentrated students have to be to be in here,” Malarie Davis (12, HSU) said. “This is much more definitive than going to the library and hoping that someone is there to help you. I am excited to see where this goes and hope students take advantage of the opportunity.”

Although the year has just started, the MAC lab is already available for students in need.

“I would like to invite every staff member and every student in the building to stop by and check it out,” Todd said. “Our vision is to make it an all-inclusive welcoming space for students to get extra support and to make it very college-like. We’re doing great things and it’s going to get even better. We want students and staff to really be a part of this and I believe it’s going to take things to the next level.”