Reposted from EdSource:
Ensuring schools are adequately preparing students for careers is just as important as ensuring they prepare students for college, says a new paper that proposes districts add specific career-readiness measures, such as the number of students who complete work-based learning programs, to their accountability plans to the public. “Developing strong, supportive pathways that incorporate both college- and career-ready skills is our best bet for ensuring students will find their way to a productive future,” said the paper, released Tuesday by the Stanford Center for Opportunity Policy in Education, or SCOPE.
The report provides three recommendations for career preparation measures that schools should include in their Local Control and Accountability Plans, or LCAPs. The plans, required under the state’s Local Control Funding Formula for school districts, require districts to outline how they will meet eight educational priority areas mandated by the state. One of those areas requires districts to ensure that all students have access to classes preparing them for college and careers.
The report’s authors based their recommendations on a review of college and career measures in a number of states. The paper recommends that accountability plans include:
- The proportion of students who complete career preparation programs that blend college-preparatory academics with workplace training;
- The proportion of students who complete work-based learning experiences; and
- The proportion of students who demonstrate they have a set of skills and knowledge in a certain field, such as those who obtain industry-approved work certificates upon high school graduation, or those who earn “virtual badges” certifying they are proficient in certain areas.