In order for students to be successful in their lives after high school graduation in the 21st century, they need certain knowledge, skills and attitudes. In our globally connected, high-tech, fast-paced world, much of the knowledge, skills and attitudes needed for success have converged for students, whether they are entering the workforce, the military, or going on to further formal training and schooling. Virtually every career or educational path after high school requires similar skills.
Preparing for success in college and career is a long journey that begins early in a student’s education. An early and ongoing understanding of college and career readiness helps students, parents and teachers keep an eye on the long-term outcome: leaving the K-12 system ready to succeed.
College and career readiness should be as much of a focus at every level of schooling as curriculum, assessments, and grades are. Preparation for college and career is as important in elementary school as it is in high school. Focusing on college and career readiness helps all stakeholders understand the big picture, the wider context of learning at each level and in each subject area, and it motivates students.
This section outlines key steps that students, parents and teachers can take from early childhood through high school to ensure student success once they leave the PK-12 school system. Parents, teachers and students can utilize the strategies outlined to stay on a path to success when they leave high school.