The Need for Auto Shop at NHS

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The Need for Auto Shop at NHS

Daniel Bartnicki, Reporter

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Novato High has a variety of electives, but there is a hole that can only be filled by reinstituting auto shop. Since the 2015-16 school year, students have been deprived of a valuable class where they could learn simple, yet valuable skills that will be helpful for life. 

Auto shop is a class where students can learn how automobiles works, as well as how to maintain and repair them. This class would be useful, as too many people rely on mechanics for even the simplest of tasks. Auto shop can save students money because they can work on their cars at school rather than pay top dollar for a mechanic to do the work. This class would be a great resource for students because most kids at NHS don’t have access to a lift or even common hand tools. 

Novato High Assistant Principal Greg Fister emphasized the positives of offering auto shop to high school students.

“I feel that it’s very valuable and if I was a student I would take auto shop… I took auto shop (in high school). My dad always said that I should be able to change my own oil so I listened to dad and I took autoshop because I wanted to know how to take care of my car,” Fister said.

With some oil changes costing over $100, it’s in a high schooler’s best interest to save their money and change their car’s oil themselves, a skill that auto shop would teach.

For some students, cars are their passion, and if MSA students get two periods to practice their passion, why can’t car guys and girls get a class to do what they love to do? 

Many students around campus think that this class would be very beneficial.

“People who enjoy cars should be able to have this class because MSA students love the arts, and dancing, and drama and all that, so people who drive cars should have the benefit of having a class that they would enjoy being in,” said senior Dominic Delucchi. “Many people want to find a career in the automotive industry and they could really benefit from a class like that.”

Students would benefit from a class specifically tailored to the career they want in the future, and with Novato High introducing Medical Career Pathways (MCP) in 2017, it gives hope to students that automotive career-focused classes could be a possibility.

Tam High class of 2018 graduate Eddie Schultz took auto shop in high school and believes it’s an essential high school class. 

“The class that I took was helpful for everybody to take. I think everyone should know how to  take their tires off, change their oil and what not,” said Schultz. “I think every school should have an auto shop.”

According to Fister, in order to get auto shop reinstated, a group of students or a teacher would have to submit the course description to the principal, and if approved, the course would go onto the BOE (Board of Education) to get the final approval. Eventually, the class would need to attract enough interest and student enrollments to qualify.

Although there is only one way to find out if auto shop could be on the course schedule in the future, lots of students believe that even if the course got to the BOE, it would not be approved.

“As much as we all want this, it probably won’t happen because the school won’t provide any funding towards the class,” said junior Alex Morice. 

Auto shop wouldn’t be a cheap class. Just a two-post car lift would cost around $4,000, and tools plus a car students can work on would easily add another $5,000 to $10,000. With a teacher’s salary on top of all other expenses, it could be difficult to convince a district that claims to have no money to provide funding. 

While the funding of the class may be expensive, the value the class offers would be much greater and fully worth it. 

Should we have Auto Shop at NHS

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