Career Pathways Expand in Scott County Schools Next Year

This+chart+shows+which+career+pathways+will+be+housed+where+throughout+Scott+County+Schools.++Career+pathways+are+intended+to+prepare+students+for+opportunities+after+graduation.++
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Career Pathways Expand in Scott County Schools Next Year

This chart shows which career pathways will be housed where throughout Scott County Schools.  Career pathways are intended to prepare students for opportunities after graduation.

This chart shows which career pathways will be housed where throughout Scott County Schools. Career pathways are intended to prepare students for opportunities after graduation.

Graphic created by Renee Holmes

This chart shows which career pathways will be housed where throughout Scott County Schools. Career pathways are intended to prepare students for opportunities after graduation.

Graphic created by Renee Holmes

Graphic created by Renee Holmes

This chart shows which career pathways will be housed where throughout Scott County Schools. Career pathways are intended to prepare students for opportunities after graduation.

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More changes will occur in Scott County Schools as career pathways will be implemented district-wide for the 2019-2020 school year. The pathways are part of the state of Kentucky’s Career and Technical Education system, and selecting one will be an additional decision to be made regarding the schedules of both current and incoming high school students. This program is designed to prepare students for their future after graduation.

The career pathways are meant to give students the opportunity to expand their interests in various fields. Pathways were selected based on the need for certain jobs in recent years, and each of the secondary schools in the district will have different pathways.   SCHS pathways will include Agriculture, Business, Marketing & Entrepreneurship, and Family and Consumer Sciences. GCHS will have pathways in Agriculture, Engineering Hybrid, Family and Consumer Sciences, Information Technology, and Manufacturing Technology. ECS will continue to offer pathways in Health Science, Media Arts, Engineering, and Law & Justice as in past years.  See the infographic for specifics on which programs will fall under each pathway.

Although it may sound foreign, the Career and Technical Education (CTE) system has existed in Scott County Schools for many years. ECS has been a part of the CTE educational system since it opened. Due to the fact that only a limited amount of students can attend ECS, the district wanted to develop authentic settings where students would have the ability to utilize their learning capabilities to further their career interests at all schools, not just ECS.

Anyone can get an experience beneficial to their future ambitions with the addition of the career pathways to SCHS and GCHS. “What we wanted to do as a district is expand those opportunities, so regardless of whether you’re an ECS student or not, you could get a career pathway experience,” said Meocha Williams, SCHS principal.

Mrs. Williams explained the history behind the creation of these pathways.  “What the state of Kentucky has done is put a great deal of research into [determining] some of the high demand career pathways that are in need of job [fulfillments],” she said. The development of these career pathways is the solution to finding employees for those much-needed jobs.

Beginning next year, the state of Kentucky will require every student to obtain a “concentration area” before they graduate. This “concentration area” will have to be shown as a four course sequence on their graduating transcripts.  Some students may choose to fulfill this requirement through a career pathway, but there will be other options as well.

Joy Lusby, principal of GCHS, explained the other options to meet this requirement.  I think students are under the impression they must complete a pathway–that’s not true. A concentration area could include four courses taken in fine arts, AP Classes, liberal arts, band, or the upcoming pathways.  We will highly encourage students to complete a pathway in Scott County to ensure that students have options once they leave high school,” Lusby said.  Incoming freshman will be required to have four of their twenty-two credits from their chosen career pathway.  “

I think students are under the impression they must complete a pathway–that’s not true. A concentration area could include four courses taken in fine arts, AP Classes, liberal arts, band, or the upcoming pathways.  We will highly encourage students to complete a pathway in Scott County to ensure that students have options once they leave high school.”

— Joy Lusby, GCHS Principal

” 

The process in which students determine their career pathways begins in eighth grade. As a part of the scheduling process, they will choose a pathway of their choice, taking into account circumstances such as their districted high school or career aspirations.

The pathway each eighth grader decides upon is not one they are locked into for their full high school experience. They can easily switch to another career pathway that is better suited for their future, but administrators hope that the process will guide them into discovering their niches and interests. “Sometimes, life happens and college may be the plan, but plans change and I want students to be prepared for whatever life throws at them,” Lusby stated.

Some students feel that the introduction of the career pathways is a new layer of stress.  Elizabeth Mook, SCHS junior, expressed her concern on middle schoolers being asked to choose a pathway, “I feel like very few people know going into high school what they want to do,” she said. “The classes that you take in preparing for your future career should mostly be taken in college.  That’s what college is for.”

Kentucky intends to help students earn various certifications at a much lower cost than what it would require if completed after graduation through the pathways program. This gives high school students the chance to receive the necessary credentials at a lower cost than what would be required if done in college.

Williams feels that will help college bound students.   “Those with certifications after high school graduation can compete with people who may already have those experiences,” she said.   Williams acknowledged that the pathways offer benefits to teachers as well. “They will have the opportunity to cater and personalize their teaching to the lens of the pathway.”

All in all, the fresh addition of career pathways will bring more meaning to the education of students enrolled. “I think it’s going to be a change in the way that we view school,” stated Williams.