Career Education is the identification and development of students’ personal interests, preferences and skills, which connect instruction to future careers.
Career Education for students includes:
- Awareness of self in relation to others and employment trends
- Exploration of employment opportunities
- Development of employment skills and personal/career decision-making
- Application of knowledge and skills
Does our district have to include Career Education?
Yes, Career Education is required by Iowa Administrative Code.
- Chapter 12.5 (4 Junior High): Career Education shall include exploration of employment opportunities; experience in career decision making, and experiences to help students integrate work values and work skills into their lives.
- Chapter 12.5 (7): Career Education. Each school or school district shall incorporate school-to-career educational programming into its comprehensive school improvement plan. Curricular and co-curricular teaching and learning experiences regarding career education shall be provided from pre-kindergarten level to grade 12. Career Education shall be incorporated into the total educational program and shall include, but is not limited to, an awareness of self in relation to others and the needs of society; exploration of employment opportunities, a minimum, within Iowa; experiences in personal decision-making; experiences that help students connect work values into all aspects of their lives; and the development of employability skills.
Where in the school is Career Education?
Career Education should be infused into the district curriculum plan and it's placement and responsibility is a local decision. Many districts use a variety of staff to attend to the necessary curriculum, such as guidance/counseling, career and technical educators, core curriculum educators, information technologists, community business partners as well as clubs, student organizations, and school activities. The curriculum director has the coordination responsibilities to imbed the educational programming of career education into a matrix or content maps. This process assists staff in recognizing and articulating the future context of the student’s learning, as well as the content knowledge and skills.
In elementary grades, the student may:
- Learn about workplace and workplace skills
- Learn about themselves – decision-making, growth and change
- Learn about education culture and achievement
- Learn about life and balance of roles
In middle grades, the student may:
- Become aware of careers and career clusters
- Participate in interest inventories to determine interest in career areas
- Participate in self awareness activities to determine personal abilities and strengths
- Participate in activities to improve work habits and behaviors (*volunteerism, projects, community service)
In high school grades, the student may:
- Build skills to improve ability to work with people, data, things (materials, tools, and equipment)
- Participate in activities to establish goals, priorities, or plans.
- Participate in activities to improve work habits and behaviors through work experiences or internships, or a work mentoring.
- Participate in activities to improve communication and teamwork with a diverse population
Who can help me on Career Education infusion?
Jan Kuhl is the career education consultant at the Department of Education and works with K-12 school counselors. Area Education Agencies have a career contact person to help with career education.
What are some examples of effective infusion of Career Education?
- Student Core Curriculum Plan (8th Grade)
- Transition counseling with student and parents/guardians
- Opportunities for workplace learning: , workplace speakers, job interviews, job shadowing, internships
- Courses for dual credit or college credit (career academies or advanced placement or PSO)
- Embedded curriculum
- curriculum content (in subject matter courses)
- curriculum certification/skill attainment (CTE or CC programs)
- curriculum processes (thematic units/project-based learning)
- curriculum design (career themes as a vehicle for content/knowledge)
- Service Learning/Character Counts/Assets
- Community Service
- School-Business Partnerships
The Iowa School Counseling Framework, based on the American School Counselor Association (ASCA) National Model, provides a framework for implementing a comprehensive and accountable school counseling program that is considered “best practice” for the profession. “School counseling program” means an articulated, sequential K-12 program that is comprehensive in scope, preventive in design, developmental in nature, driven by data and integral to the school district’s curricula and instructional program. The Iowa School Counseling Framework is written to reflect a comprehensive approach to program foundation, delivery, management and accountability. The framework provides a system that encourages and promotes each student’s academic, career and personal/social development in preparation for the challenges of the 21st century.
National Career Development Guidelines (2006-08-28)
The American Career Resource Network (ACRN) provides information and training on career exploration. It is funded by a grant from the U. S. Department of Education and includes a variety of state and federal organizations. The primary focus of ACRN is on helping youth and adults make the best possible decisions about education, training and career development while also providing teachers and counselors with guides and curricula that help them incorporate quality career development into any high-quality academic program. One of ACRN™ resources is the National Career Development Guidelines (NCDG), a framework for building and evaluating career development programs in a variety of settings. The following link will take you to the NCDG website which describes the framework and provides information specific to students, parents, teachers, and counselors: http://www.acrnetwork.org/ncdg.htm.
In light of the current challenges facing youth, high school redesign and reform has become a rising issue of importance. ACTE has released a position statement on school reform, Reinventing the American High School for the 21st Century, outlining the organization’s vision on what high schools should be and how career and technical education (CTE) can contribute to reform and redesign efforts. In this position statement, ACTE promotes a number of CTE strengths and resources that will help prepare students for postsecondary education and the 21st century workforce.
Iowa Workforce Development
http://www.iowaworkforce.org (Select Students)
IPTV - School to Careers
Iowa College Student Aid Commission
Dept. of Labor Educational Resources
U.S Dept. of Labor
Economic Trends Iowa Trends
Office of Social & Economic Trend Analysis
Iowa Job Outlook
Occupational Outlook Handbook
Occupational Outlook Quarterly
State Occupational Projections