As a former teacher and now substitute teacher, Lisa Ovaitt, knows the hardships for students who would like to take dual credits in high school, but cannot afford the fees.

Ovaitt has started a fundraising campaign to help these students have the opportunity to take dual credit courses, as well as Advanced Placement classes, and to help pay for a cosmetology kit ($700)for students at the Cosmetology School at Hart Career Center.

Ovaitt has titled the project "Clearing the Path." It helps kids with one less obstacle. "It is a way of clearing another obstacle for kids to do the best they can," said Ovaitt. "The money can help kids take the courses and also helps them with the realization they can go to college and opens the possibilities that there is help out there," she added

The are three main goals for "Clearing the Path."

. Encourage all MHS students to excel academically

. Alleviate financial burden for families

. Help MHS students take dual college credit courses.

While Mexico High School offers many dual credit and Advanced Placement courses, some juniors and seniors are precluded from these opportunities because of their family's financial situation. This hindrance is compounded by the fact that access to these courses can help reduce the tuition requirement once in college by reducing the number of hours required after taking these courses in high school, Ovaitt stated.

Fees for dual credit courses range from $225-$320.

Dual credit courses include: American Literature up to 1870; American Literature from 1870; Composition I and II; Public Speaking; College Biology; Intro to Conservation Biology; Anatomy; Online College algebra; Drawing and Painting; and Ceramics.

AP classes are offered to students with qualifying academic history. Once the course is completed, the student must take an exam for Advanced Placement in College. The fee for the test is $93.

Ovaitt’s goal is to visit civic organizations and explain "Clearing the Path" to them. She has visited some organizations, but wants to visit more. "I would like to visit all civic groups," she said. Individuals and business are also welcome to donate. Ovaitt said any donation amount is welcomed.

"Clearing the Path" will begin with the 2017-2018 school year. "And I hope it continues for a long time," said Ovaitt.

The criteria for the disbursement of the money has yet to be decided. The three making the decision on who is eligible for the money will be the principal at the high school, the counselor and Ovaitt.

People wanting to donate should make the checks out to Mexico Public Schools and put Clearing the Path in the memo. They should be mailed to Clearing the Path c/o Lisa Ovaitt, 101 South Street, Mexico, Mo 65265.