November 14, 2017 8:59 am

Winnipeg students taking high school courses at Investors Group Field

WATCH: Winnipeg high school students attending classes at IGF as part of pilot project. Global's Amber McGuckin reports.

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You may think of Investors Group Field as a place where the Winnipeg Blue Bombers are learning new plays, but a group of Winnipeg students are there earning their high school diplomas.

It’s part of the Pembina Trails School Division’s pilot project as an alternative classroom that started last year.

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“We knew we needed a second location, a different location to get them out of their school but we knew we needed accessibility, we needed interest and this location, because we have a wonderful relationship with the stadium and the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, it seemed to all fall into place.” Julie Fisher, from the Pembina Trails School Division said.

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The school has 48 students in the program, all were identified as needing special attention from their high schools.

“The school structure doesn’t suit everybody and for students that it doesn’t suit, it’s just wonderful that there is a place for them to go that does allow for their differences and responds to their needs in a really personal way,” school principal Susan Woods said.

The students work at their own pace to complete the courses they need, which is helpful for students like Kristen Cloud.

“If I miss a day it’s not like a really big deal I can come back and get right on where I left off but if I was still going to Oak Park I wouldn’t be able to do that I would be so far behind. It’s just easier because I’m doing my own pace here, instead of everyone else’s pace at Oak Park,” Cloud said.

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An added perk to going to this school means there’s a chance to run into one of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers players, according to Grade 12 student Tristan Dean.

“One time everyone was sitting outside smoking and vaping and whatever and James West walked by. He came up and gave us a talk about smoking and that we shouldn’t be smoking and how he was a Hall of Famer for the Bombers and he went on with his day. He just came and talked to us and walked away like nothing happened,” Dean said.

In June, 16 students graduated from the program, another 16 or so are expected to earn their diplomas next year.

© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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