In 2018, we received grant money from Regional Opportunity Initiatives, Inc., to participate in the design thinking and planning process. In the summer of 2020, we applied for and received an implementation grant of up to $1.2 million from Regional Opportunity Initiatives, Inc. We can also apply for additional grant and partnership opportunities through different programs.
This grant enables us to prepare all students for relevant pathways after graduation.
That is not the purpose or intended outcome of this grant. We do however hope to increase students’ awareness of various career fields and post-secondary options available to them so they are college, career, and life ready when they graduate.
Teachers and administrators are on the Design Teams which have been involved throughout the entire design thinking process and will be helping to create the implementation plan. Rather than being an add-on, it can be a way to integrate relevancy and hands-on learning to what teachers are already doing. For example, our work aligns directly with the Indiana Department of Education's new Employability Skills Standards, State STEM Strategic Plan, Graduation Pathways, and the Governor's Workforce Cabinet Initiatives. By aligning our PK-12 curriculum and incorporating what students need to be successful, it will be beneficial to all stakeholders. This work may result in incorporating innovative practices, but hopefully, not more “work.”
The implementation plan will take place in phases that will take place over 3-5 years and beyond, beginning with the 2020-21 school year. It is important for the strategic plan to have a strong sustainability component.
This grant will impact all students in MCCSC, grades PK-12.
What we know is from a very young age, students develop their own self-efficacy regarding interest in areas such as math and science. As a result, we are purposely exposing our students and providing awareness to many options so they can make informed decisions based on their interests. One example of this is the MCCSC GEMS program which exposes female students to the STEM related fields.
With this in mind, we need to make sure our students and families are aware of all the post-secondary opportunities available to them, especially in the region. This grant allows us to enable schools to engage business leaders, community stakeholders, parents and students in meaningful dialogue about what success means within their community and to develop a plan to obtain that success. The result of this process will be a systemic PK-12 approach designed to support students in achieving their academic and career goals.