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Positive Options Program

What is the Positive Options Program?

Pittsfield Public Schools partners with Berkshire Community College (BCC) to offer this early college program, the Positive Options Program (POP), in a small group setting located at BCC. Here, juniors and seniors can finish their high school degrees while dipping their toes into the college experience. With the POP teacher, students craft a personalized learning experience, taking a mix of in-person and online classes. POP students use the BCC fieldhouse and the campus trail system to fulfill their Physical Education credits. They also take several life skills workshops throughout the school year on topics ranging from personal finances to paying for college to healthy meal planning.

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  • Who can participate in POP?

    Juniors and seniors from Pittsfield and Taconic High Schools can participate.

  • What is dual enrollment, and how does that connect to POP?

    Dual enrollment is strongly encouraged for every POP student. It is a program, offered by BCC, where students can take college courses for free (the average cost of a single college course is $2,300). This is an opportunity to slowly begin college with direct support from the POP teaching team. College courses count toward both college and high school. One BCC English class equals high school senior English credit and freshman college English credit.

  • Who is a good candidate for POP?

    POP students should have a strong attendance record and should have already demonstrated an ability to work independently. Many kinds of students benefit from our program. As high school upperclassmen, some are ready for a more mature learning environment. Some perform better in a small group setting, as compared to a large high school. Some have medical or emotional challenges that make a small, flexible program appealing. Some are ready to begin college early, and want to take advantage of programs offered by BCC such as the STEM Starter Academy.

  • How do I find out more or apply for a spot?

    Speak to your guidance counselor or school adjustment counselor. They can help you arrange a time to tour our space, meet the teachers, ask questions and ultimately make an official referral.

  • Who is the classroom teacher for POP?

    Meghan St. John available at mstjohn@pittsfield.net