On top of their day-to-day business of educating students, right now educators are in the midst of an incredibly important added responsibility: planning for next year.
Schools and districts across the nation are busy developing goals, strategies, budgets, calendars, lesson plans and the like – the number of meetings and volume of paper would shock anyone not familiar with the process.
However, planning for college and career readiness is often reduced to a single event, such as a college day or career fair, oftentimes reserved for upperclassmen. That simply is not enough to guarantee students graduate college and career ready. Educators should incorporate coverage across grade levels, grade-level-appropriate lessons and activities, and continual reinforcement that students have it in them to succeed.
And a good place to start is the annual planning process. Regardless of role, every education stakeholder has the responsibility to treat college and career readiness as one of their primary goals. Here are some suggestions to help make that happen:
- School Boards: Review your district’s vision, mission, and goals…are they explicit when it comes to college and career readiness? When reviewing budgets and other planning documents for next year, specifically ask how those plans will further college and career readiness.
- Superintendents: Continuously re-enforce to your principals and staff that college and career readiness is a priority. Develop specific, measurable readiness goals and hold everyone (including yourself) accountable for achieving them.
- Principals: Help your teachers and counselors translate district goals into classroom-ready lesson plans and activities. Ensure every school-wide plan for next year makes college and career readiness a priority.
- Teachers and Counselors: In addition to academics, help your students develop a growth mindset and love for learning. Pepper lesson plans with enrichment activities designed to inspire and motivate students to pursue their postsecondary dreams.
- Parents: Attend school board meetings and other planning meetings. Ask what the district is doing to ensure your child graduates college and career ready.
- Students: Make sure your teachers and counselors know your future plans, ask for their guidance and help in achieving them.
- Local Businesses: Ask to meet with district and school leaders, make sure they know the hard and soft skills you seek in new hires. Offer your company’s help (volunteers, funding, etc.) to incorporate those skills into the academic program.
Career & College Clubs can help your district focus on college and career readiness. Our turnkey, 7th – 12th grade program is both affordable and has proven results. Contact us today to learn more.