Community Based Training and Instruction

Community Based Training (CBT)

An integral part of the instructional program at the Earl L. Pulley Career Center is the instruction and training received at the community-based training (CBT) employment settings. These sites are cooperating businesses in the community who allow students to train in real working settings under the Fair Labor Standards Act Guidelines. This allows the students to develop real work skills and to acquire appropriate work behaviors.

Community-based training is emphasized as a viable means of enhancing development of work-related skills. Hands-on instruction in a real work environment is the most successful means of teaching skill development in a specific field and affords the students opportunities to develop a more realistic understanding of necessary work habits and behaviors. Students working at the job sites will be given the opportunity to learn and participate in jobs at the level which they are capable of performing or can be successful as possible. This allows staff to focus efforts on preparing future workers who have more choices and marketable skills when they exit the Pulley Career Center to enter a more competitive job market in the 21st century. Students are assigned to the job sites based on levels of independence, skill levels, ages, interests, and career skills needs.

These sites are a vital link to the development of appropriate work expectations as the students make the transition to employment. They interact with the employees at the site and learn the protocols of various employment settings, such as an office center, restaurant, school, hotel, greenhouse, and retirement home.
Students, depending on training needs, may go out to community work experience sites in various training models. Some of the students work in small groups with direct teacher supervision, some are on individual sites with short-term job coach support, and some work at individual sites with the direct training and supervision of employers.

Community Based Instruction (CBI)

Community-based instruction (CBI) is an integral part of the Pulley Career Center curriculum that focuses on the development of occupational and functional living skills to increase student attainment of goals for independent living, and will enable them to live and work in the community environments in which they need to function.

Through CBI experiences, students’ skills are developed in a wide variety of community environments, giving them exposure to and experiences with real world settings in the presence of non-disabled people using naturally occurring materials and situations. They are taught functional, age-appropriate skills in the environment in which they occur naturally, thus minimizing the need for generalization of skills from an artificially structured environment to the natural environment.

Training within the community is a vital part of the transition of students to their communities. Teachers provide students with direct instruction in school and community environments to assist them in successfully accessing goods and services in settings such as stores, banks, restaurants, job sites, businesses, recreational facilities, and in using public transportation. Community integration and training occurs daily and includes structured classroom lessons, accessing school resources, supportive practice in neighborhood environments, and utilizing public transportation to independently access community services, recreation, and job opportunities. Teachers provide on-going instruction in banking and travel training using naturally occurring materials and situations in real world settings.