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Real Life Getting Back in Schools Again

FYI’s Real Life Teen Choices program is considered “essential” by the schools, thankfully. This means that despite a slow start, our educators are now being eagerly scheduled to go back into school buildings to teach a life-giving curriculum.

When the school year started last month, it seemed no one knew exactly how things were going to look in schools during this pandemic environment. Initially, the schools were understandably cautious about who they allowed into their school buildings. In response, the Real Life program created a robust virtual teaching program to give teachers and administrators another option to choose in getting our educators into their schools.

However, in the past couple of weeks, schools got a better idea of how things are shaking out … and that opened the doors again for Real Life Director Rebecca Swearingen and her team. Swearingen said Tuesday that all the remaining weeks of school in 2020 are booked with at least one live presentation, and some weeks have two – except for the week of FYI’s signature Harvesting Hope Dinner and Fundraiser on Oct. 15. This was intentional because the whole staff will be pouring all their efforts into the event that week.

“We are so honored to be considered essential and have the opportunity to continue this life-changing program for the students,” said Swearingen. “Being there in person is always our preferred approach, especially when you are teaching about relationships. It is always good to have a personal face-to-face interaction.”

Meanwhile, FYI is in the process of updating its office WiFi capabilities to accommodate new virtual teaching tools that have been purchased.

“The goal is to impact them the same, which just means we need to alter what we are doing,” Swearingen said. “It means we have to be more creative. Most of the classrooms prefer in-person, and so do we. Teaching virtually is still effective but it also means not being able to do activities, give candy as rewards, etc... Being face-to-face allows the educator an opportunity to read the students and have personal conversations. Virtually teaching does allow us to see the students, but more as a group than as individuals."

So the end result is that Real Life now offers two options for delivering its empowering training to students - and two is almost always better than one.

For more information or to volunteer with the Real Life program, call (937) 845-0403 or email

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