High schools within Texas have the flexibility to develop individual course programming to support the educational programming of each student. Electives should be arranged and grouped together according to Career Clusters. In this way, students can enroll and complete supporting / tiered classes leading to advanced understanding within a specific course of study. Numerous elective classes have been recently created under the umbrella of CTE / Career and Technical Education to support each career cluster. To promote successful employment experiences, students can complete several educational class options associated with employment. Career Preparation is a regular education elective class which combines a classroom of career enrichment programming with off-campus paid-employment experiences. Supporting Special Education, qualifying students can take a VAC (modified) class called the Work Experience Class. This instructional setting provides greater flexibility to create an Individual Education Plan centered upon paid-employment and completion of the student's functional goal / objective. As described, this class may have an accompanying academic classroom experience. Students can earn course credit toward graduation while working successfully off campus. School-to-work programming is considered elective credit. Individuals must complete required courses needed for high school graduation in addition to off-campus coop programming. For this reason, students should be responsible to pass required courses in concert with this type of class.
Within initial entry in the practicum course, students complete an informational data sheet. This information is used to communicate with the parents / student for academic reasons. The document includes a student schedule. As a school-to-work instructor, the student's success in other classes is directly affected by the individual's work life. Both areas go hand-in-hand and should be monitored. The course programming allows the instructor to customize instruction and meet the career exploration objectives of each student. Regardless of instructional level or job site, each student will complete a weekly work schedule. This item generally accounts for one daily grade and required as a key part of the course. Both classes are held to the academic course standards governed by Chapter 127 of the Texas Knowledge and Skills for Career Development Subchapter B High School. While meeting the accommodations / modifications of certain students, the course generally follows the topics set forth in the Year in Review.
Review course descriptions for both situations related with school-to-work programs - course information may be beneficial when creating your Coop / VAC school-to-work program. Instructors of both classes can work together and combine resources to support local students.