The America Achieves Educator Networks works to increase the number of students who have access to and complete a quality education pathway that leads to career and life success.
Perhaps it’s the increased attention to the changing economy and advances in technology that finally provoked organizations like the one I now work for to rethink how the experiences students are exposed to can help them to better understand what options exist after high school and better prepare for their future.
All too often, we see initiatives in education developed without any meaningful input from the stakeholders in schools and classrooms every day—educators.
As you are aware, Quest for Success is designed to help middle and high school students develop essential 21st-century skills. It is an open education resource offered to schools completely free-of-charge. As a former school leader myself, I wanted to share a few ways that Quest for Success can support you in this new school year.
I remember when “career readiness” in Louisiana consisted of a large collection of VHS tapes that contained 15-minute vignettes of various entry-level jobs that non-college bound students could enter. The tapes were boring, the students hated watching them, and no training was given to them on how to be successful in the workplace.
How can you, as a leader and educator, make sure that the project-based learning in your school is driving at something more than projects for projects’ sake? How can you make sure that all of your students are being challenged, developing skills they can take out of the classroom and into the real world, and are set up for success in their careers and lives?
How we define, understand and promote motivation matters, and it matters now more than ever as we seek to help students master an increasingly rigorous set of academic and cross-sector employability skills needed for career and life success in the 21st century.
Project-based learning is a very powerful practice for accelerating important learning for Black, Brown, and low-income kids. It provides “voice and choice” for the students and it encourages new ways for kids to show mastery of skills. PBL can also help close the belief gap because many people are able to see what kids accomplish. Perhaps most powerfully, PBL can close the belief gap for teachers too.
When you envision your students’ futures, what do they look like? What do your students know and what are they able to do in this rapidly changing society and world of work? What character traits and dispositions do they have?
At Manhattan Hunter Science High School on the Upper West Side, about half of the roughly 440 students are black or Hispanic, and most are low-income.
Our schools need help from stakeholders who have a better understanding of how well-paid, upwardly mobile careers are changing, the related skills and knowledge expected of new hires, and how best to develop and assess these skills.
It is our greatest hope that when our students leave campus they have created their own vision for their lives and feel as though they received the tools in high school to successfully carry out that vision.