College and career readiness

Transforming Business Engagement at School, Part Two

Guest post by Tommy T. Welch

In last week’s post, I described how Meadowcreek High School (MHS) has partnered with local and national businesses to develop a robust program of paid internships that are enhancing student learning and long-term curriculum development. Of course, this did not happen overnight. It took years of effort from hundreds of people all working toward a common goal. But I am absolutely confident that other communities can replicate our success. (more…)

Transforming Business Engagement at School, Part One

Guest post by Tommy T. Welch

One of the main functions we perform in education is preparing our students for entering the workforce. But how do we know if we are succeeding? Traditional assessments tend to focus on achievement up to high school graduation but not after. There are numerous articles and studies out there that explore how curricula need to change to equip students with the skills necessary for 21st-century jobs. At Meadowcreek High School, we have taken a slightly different approach by partnering directly with local and national businesses to give students hands-on experience through paid internships. By approaching businesses as authentic knowledge partners rather than just taxpayers, donors, or sponsors, we have enlisted their expertise and experience in the process of preparing our students for productive careers and lifelong learning. (more…)

Career Gears: Preparing Students Today for Tomorrow’s Opportunities

Guest post by Ryan Rismiller

With so much going on in education policy these days, it’s easy sometimes to lose focus of what matters most—students. At Graham High School, we are using a program we call Career Gears to provide relevant opportunities for our students district-wide. Working with stakeholders throughout the community, we create relevant experiences that can help students identify their career interests and build professional skills and relationships for the future.  (more…)

Promoting Ownership of Learning Through Student-Led Conferences

Guest post by Mike King

Located on the rolling plains of Southwest Kansas, Dodge City is a town with Wild West roots where Wyatt Earp, Bat Masterson, and Doc Holliday used to rule the land. Today, Dodge City is less lawman and gunfighters and more meatpackers and manufacturers with Cargill Meat Solutions and National Beef as the community’s top employers. As principal of Dodge City Middle School (DCMS), I am on a constant mission to cultivate opportunities for our students to develop college and career readiness skills and help them take ownership of their learning.  (more…)

Focus on the “BE” before the “DO”

Guest post by Jay R. Dostal

Last year, my leadership team held a two-day retreat to focus on moving from our current school building into the new one we were building at the time. As you might imagine, moving a 230,000 square foot building, in addition to implementing a new educational model centered on college, career, and life readiness, can be quite stressful and taxing. Many details needed to be coordinated, including developing a communication plan, updating multiple forms with the new address, purchasing new furniture, and much more. My team and I worked diligently to put together a list of things that we needed to get done during our two-day hiatus away from the building, and we had every intention of getting them completed before the second semester started. Then the retreat happened. (more…)

Advocacy Update: Tracking ESSA

ESSA Toolkit

The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) requires your engagement as an education stakeholder as states develop legislation to meet the law’s requirements. Since many legislators have limited background in education, it is important that you as a school leader ensure your voice is heard. The ESSA Toolkit for Principals empowers you to advocate on behalf of your school and students and provides you with the necessary tools. (more…)

Career Academies: Rigor, Relevance, and Relationships

Guest post by Darrin M. Peppard

Steve, a veteran math teacher, asked, “Why do we do our learning walks in classrooms that don’t match with our own content area?” With a confused look, I responded, “Because you don’t really teach content, Steve, you teach kids, and kids need transferable skills more than they need content.” (more…)

Advocacy Update: Tracking ESSA

National Principals Month

We are already into the third week of National Principals Month and time is flying by. Twenty states have already helped honor principals by passing their own resolutions formally recognizing National Principals Month. NASSP wants to thank the governors, legislators, and NASSP members in those states who helped make these resolutions possible. (more…)

Advocacy Update: Tracking ESSA

Inside the Beltway

What’s going on in Washington?

On August 31, the U.S. Department of Education released proposed regulations on the supplement, not supplant provisions of Title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), recently revised by the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). Public comments will be accepted until November 7, and the final regulations are expected to be issued before President Obama ends his term in office in January 2017. (more…)

Advocacy Update

Inside the Beltway

What’s going on in Washington?

The U.S. Department of Education (ED) made several important announcements this week concerning implementation of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). On February 2, Acting Secretary of Education John King sent a follow-up letter to chief state school officers concerning the president’s Testing Action Plan, released in October. In the letter, King updated the plan to align with the requirements of ESSA and clarify that, through ESSA, states will receive funds that can be used to help develop and improve their assessment systems. (more…)