Last year, Childersburg High School in Talladega, Ala., embarked on an initiative to make students more college- and career- ready. As a teacher at Childersburg, I’m proud to be involved in this college and career program, which requires bold action, targeted initiatives, and a fresh approach to teaching and learning. And the program is working so far.
We’ve found that students at Childersburg High School want to be at school. This year, since we’ve increased our focus on careers and college, dropouts have declined 86 percent. Tardiness has declined 19 percent, and more than 80 percent of students are involved in clubs, sports, and other school organizations.
Here are 15 ways we’ve created a college- and career-focused culture at our school. Which ones might work in yours?
1) Host a mock-interview day. Recruit volunteers and have them interview every student in your school, not just upperclassmen. Arm your students with the tools they need for this important scenario: résumés, cover letters, communication skills, business attire, and professional attitudes!
2) Establish a speakers series. Invite the world to your school. Our students have learned from college recruiters, career specialists, community activists, recent graduates, and others with unique skills, talents, and information. Expose students to the world through those you invite to school. <Read more.>