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Letter from the Superintendent

GBHS Construction Trades Partners with City Hall to Create Business Park

5 months ago

Grand Blanc Community Schools is excited to announce that our Construction Trades students will be collaborating with the City of Grand Blanc, U of M-Flint and the Harding Foundation for the 2018-19 school year. Construction Trades is part of the CTE (Career & Technical Education) program at Grand Blanc High School. The Geometry In Construction, Construction Trades 2 and Advanced Construction students will be participating in the build.

The students, supervised by Grand Blanc High School teachers Wes Wiltse and Jason Youngs, will be building “tiny house” style structures that will be used on Grand Blanc Road as start-up business rental properties. Wiltse said, “One f the things that are most exciting to me is that our students will be able to go out in the community 20 years from now and tell their kids that ‘I built that!’ They take great pride in their work. Also, I’m so thankful for the opportunity given to us by Mayor Soderstrom and the City of Grand Blanc.” Youngs agreed, stating, “This is an amazing opportunity for the students in our Construction Trades program. The ability to give our students an opportunity to serve others in our community is what Grand Blanc is about.”

“This is an amazing opportunity for the students in our Construction Trades program. The ability to give our students an opportunity to serve others in our community is what Grand Blanc is about.” 
- Teacher, Jason Youngs

The small buildings will be available for rent to entrepreneurs that want to have a location but haven’t yet achieved the necessity or resources to have a bigger space. “With the generous grant funding from The Harding Foundation, the City of Grand Blanc is excited to be working with so many partners bringing entrepreneurs to our downtown and creating a sense of place in 2019,” said City Manager, Wendy Jean-Buhrer.

Grand Blanc Schools Superintendent, Clarence Garner, is enthusiastic about the collaboration, adding, “We are so fortunate in Grand Blanc to have a unique partnership with our City and Township. Having teachers like Mr. Youngs and Mr. Wiltse who seek out opportunities for our students to expand their experiences outside of the classroom to impact our community is really what public education is all about.”


the village green
port austin, michigan

The innovative pop-up tiny business has become very popular, an example of which can be seen in Port Austin, Michigan, called The Village Green (pictures above). Grand Blanc city officials hope to attract new business ventures to the area with the tiny buildings and provide a unique shopping experience to residents on Grand Blanc Road by City Hall.

Superintendent Garner, Wiltse, and Youngs recently joined organizers at Grand Blanc City Hall in accepting a check from The Harding Foundation that will fund an intense workshop for new businesses. The [IN] (Innovation Incubator) 3-part series is designed to help take ideas to the market and is led by U of M-Flint’s Office of Outreach. The sessions will be held October 4th, 11th and 25th from 5pm-8pm at Grand Blanc McFarlen Library. The boot camp will help participants prepare for a Business Pitch Competition that will take place on November 8th at Grand Blanc City Hall. The grand prize of this will be a FREE season of rent at the city’s new pop-up business park.

[IN] on the Road Business Boot Camp will be open at no cost to all adults and teens courtesy of The Harding Foundation. The Harding Foundation’s David Merot said, “The Harding Foundation is pleased to reveal our new grant project with the City, the University of Michigan-Flint and Grand Blanc High School. The future seems to be brighter when community members and organizations partner and work together.”

Youngs and Wiltse aim to have Construction Trades students complete 5 structures simultaneously by April 2019. The students will complete the exterior with siding, shingles, soffit and fascia, doors and windows to specifications from the City. The inside will be studs and OSB, to be finished by the future renter.

For more information, please go online to The application form can be found here.



3 months ago


Grand Blanc Schools Urges Caution with Private Companies

Offering Financial Aid Research Services

Paying for College is daunting for many of our Grand Blanc students and parents, but please do your research before paying anyone else to help you find aid. Grand Blanc Schools has received word that some of our families are receiving letters offering services to help you find ways to pay for college. The administration asks you to beware of any unsolicited contact from private companies. Companies may be contacting our students and parents by phone, email or through the mail. Similar companies have been charging people excessive amounts of money to provide information that can likely be found for free.

Most genuine sources of assistance are going to come from government agencies, Grand Blanc High School staff, or the colleges themselves, and don’t cost a penny. The federal government says to be wary if what the seller is offering seems to be good to be true. These companies often use high-pressure tactics and create urgency to sign on the dotted line. They may offer services for free and then ask for money after contact has been made. The FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) website says companies tap into the anxiety parents feel about paying for college and make urgent statements like, "Buy now or miss this opportunity." They may invite you to a “free” seminar where they claim if you leave without buying the service, you will have to pay more or not be able to receive services. 
The US Department of Education website states, “Remember, the ‘opportunity’ is a chance to pay for information you could find yourself for free.” There is a vast amount of free information out there, and it takes just a little effort in this online age to access a host of organizations and scholarship applications on your own. One of the most crucial things you can do is to fill out the FAFSA by the deadline given by your State and Federal agencies. FAFSA applications usually begin acceptance in October of the year prior to graduation. The State of Michigan deadline for fall was March 1 and the Federal deadline is June 30 this year. Changes can be made until September. If you’ve missed the state deadline, it is still a good idea to fill out the application. Even if you aren’t sure what your plans are, it is a good idea to fill out the application. The process is free and is often a prerequisite for other state and local scholarships.
The State of Michigan Department of Education has a State Higher Education Agency with a website that lists scholarship opportunities and other valuable information. The site states the following: “High school seniors should be ready to start their scholarship applications in the fall. High school underclassmen should research scholarship opportunities and begin assembling application components so that they can prepare their scholarship applications in the fall of their senior year.”

The US Department of Education lists the following recommended free resources for advice: 

·       the financial aid office at a college or career school
·       a high school or TRIO counselor (Department of Education)
·       the U.S. Department of Labor’s free scholarship search tool
·       your state grant agency
·       your library’s reference section
·       foundations, religious or community organizations, local businesses, or civic groups
·       organizations (including professional associations) related to your field of interest
·       ethnicity-based organizations
·       your employer or your parents’ employers

Some scholarship deadlines are as early as a year before college starts, so if you’re in high school now, you should be researching and applying for scholarships during the summer between your junior and senior years.

If you aren’t at the stage of getting ready for college just yet, talk to your high school counselor during the school year about what career paths you are considering and what options there are to save some money now. There are many opportunities to earn college credit while still in high school that will save some money later on, as well as trades programs that will give you a sound foundation for a great career after high school.

These are a couple of great places to get started:

FAFSA Website

Michigan Student Aid

  • Join the Dining Services team at GBCS!
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