No Boundaries program to operate out of Spencer City Hall

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future Spencer City Hall building

A program that offers real world experience to area high school students by letting them work on projects for local businesses, nonprofits and government entities will be housed at Spencer City Hall for the upcoming school year.

The Spencer City Council on Monday approved, 7-0, a resource sharing agreement with the Spencer Community School District to house the No Boundaries program at Spencer City Hall. 

Spencer Schools started the No Boundaries program this past school year. It’s a joint program between Spencer, Okoboji and Graetenger-Terril/Ruthven-Ayshire schools for junior and senior students.

“The purpose was to give real world experience to these students,” Spencer Community Schools Director of Improvement Will Dible told the council. “To just get them both work- and college-ready, you know, give them the actual live experience.”

The program will have a space upstairs in city hall that is unoccupied right now. The program’s current location at 8 West Fourth Street won’t be available next year.

“We have available space and No Boundaries is looking for space in the community for their program,” City Manager Amanda Mack said. “I personally think it’s a really great partnership and also breathes life into the building to have younger-than-us people in it working on projects benefiting the community.”

The school district will pay the city $400 per month for the space and will pay for its own internet and phones.

Dible said the program talks with businesses, nonprofits and government agencies about allowing students to explore taking on projects that they’ve “always wanted to do” but aren’t essential to their success.

“We have our students work on those projects in order to get high school and college credit,” Dible said. “So they need a collaborative work space in order to do that.”

He said having a space outside of the school allows students to adopt a more business-like, professional mindset. Students will be accompanied by an instructor when in the building.

“We’ll never have kids there without one of our staff members there,” Spencer Schools Superintendent Terry Hemann told the council. “Our kids will always be supervised on-site.”

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