A young man from Hampton Township School District said he joined Future Ready Leaders (FRL) in hopes of finding more ways for his high school to engage businesses in student learning. A senior from Quaker Valley School District joined FRL with a view toward identifying more opportunities for students to build social capital.
Both shared their thoughts about participating in FRL following a mid-November kickoff meeting that brought together teams from all 11 districts participating in the program this year. Piloted last year, FRL supports educators and students in collaborating around projects for improving future readiness opportunities in their schools.
At this year’s kickoff session, two returning districts—South Allegheny and Hampton Township—shared work that they did during the pilot. South Allegheny’s team organized graduating seniors to talk during morning announcements about their post-secondary plans, what they thought had been most influential in preparing them for the future, and what advice they’d give to their 9th grade selves with the benefit of hindsight. Kira, the student who shared the work, said her team decided it was a simple way of introducing classmates to many different post-secondary pathways.
In Hampton Township, students focused on how their district might expand opportunities for developing creativity. After submitting their goals to the administration, they won a grant for beginning a “creativity day” during which students and educators can learn alongside each other.
As it did last year, FRL will offer participating students and teachers separate professional development sessions, with three areas of focus—student plans, skill-building, and school-business partnerships.
The November kickoff offered breakout sessions on each.
In addition to Hampton Township, South Allegheny and Quaker Valley, districts participating in FRL this year include Allegheny Valley, Belle Vernon Area, Brownsville Area, California Area, Cornell, Elizabeth Forward, Greater Latrobe, and Montour.