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Stagg Chargers feel at home in new, accessible kitchen

Amos Alonzo Stagg has a new recipe for success. Consolidated High School District 230 created a custom-built, accessible kitchen for Stagg’s Ultima students, students with specialized learning needs.


The new kitchen will provide an ADA compliant culinary lab for students to practice functional academics, vocational skills, and daily living skills.  


The district transformed the kitchen space from standard height counters, cabinets and appliances to four new stations – two at standard height and two that are ADA compliant.  


The new space allows for students to demonstrate independence and for all students to have access to the different components of a kitchen. The students will also benefit from having the opportunity for the teacher to model in the teacher station, while the students work in small groups under the guidance of the staff in their respective stations.  


The new kitchen allows for students to continue to grow their independence in the areas of daily living and vocational skills, said Stagg’s Director of Special Services Gail Rubio.


Cooking can play an important role in some of the student’s therapy. Simple day-to-day tasks like following a recipe help prepare students to live independently and holding a bowl with one hand and stirring with the other can develop motor skills.


Students are able to transfer skills they learn in the classroom into real world practice. With the guidance and support of the staff, the Ultima students will create shopping lists for specific recipes, shop for the ingredients in local grocery stores and practice following multi-step directions for a simple recipe in our accessible kitchen. 


Many of the students are also utilizing the space for Charlie Charger's Treats microbusiness, where students make homemade dog treats that are sold throughout the school year to the D230 school community. 


“This space is really invaluable for our students in the Special Services Department at Stagg High School. We are beyond grateful to the Board of Education and District Administration for the completion of this space for our students,” Rubio said.