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Knox County Juniors and Seniors Participate in a REALL Simulation
Knox County Juniors and Seniors Participate in a REALL Simulation
Laura Greenley
Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Today, January 29 at Knox County, the juniors and seniors are participating in a REALL simulation in the gym, sponsored by the Community Action Partnership in Northeast Missouri.  During the Reality Enrichment and Life Lessons simulation, "Students will encounter issues of inadequate education and income, managing a budget, being labeled as an ex-offender, caring for children and other adult responsibilities. They will be challenged to make REALL decisions." The simulation is designed to help students realize the decisions they make each day do have consequences. According to the CAPNEMO staff members, students will have the opportunity to identify components and sources of income and analyze how their career choices, education, skills, and economic conditions can affect their income and goals. Students will also learn about taxes, government transfer payments, and employee benefits. 

Throughout the simulation, students will take on assigned roles and complete the simulation twice. During this time, the students will get a practice run of life while making decisions with very different consequences. Simulation facilitator, Rebecca Milligan shared that during the 1st session, students will live the life of someone who has made reactive decisions such as dropping out of school, and some will have been arrested for drugs or alcohol. During the second session, students will live the life of someone who has made proactive decisions. This scenario includes graduating from high school and moving forward with positive choices. Each session lasts 4 weeks and includes realistic lives including challenges and opportunities that people face each day. 

During the simulation, students travel from booths taking care of daily items such as paying rent, meeting with a probation officer, dropping off children at daycare, and going to work. Booths are being run by community members and Knox County staff members who volunteered their time for this learning experience. Following both simulations, students will regroup and discuss the lessons learned throughout the experience.