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District Adopts Career Guidance Service To Address New Texas Ed Requirement

A Texas school district is piloting an application to help its students prepare for careers just in time to address revisions to high school graduation requirements that mandate similar practices. Frenship Independent School District near Lubbock will be testing iCEV from CEV Multimedia among its eighth graders. iCEV is an online program that provides educational content to guide students through the new process of choosing "endorsement areas of study."

New state legislation that addresses curriculum and graduation requirements requires that new ninth graders specify "in writing" what endorsements he or she intends to earn during high school. Similar to a college major, the Texas endorsement concept requires at least 26 credits in specific subjects. For example, a student might pursue a "business and industry endorsement" by completing the general required classes along with a "coherent sequence" of courses in a career "cluster," such as architecture and construction or marketing. The chosen endorsement can be changed along the way; a student can earn more than one endorsement; and he or she may choose to opt out during 10th grade.

The district pilot program is intended to help the students learn more about specific potential careers. The iCEV application provides video content, such as interviews with professionals in various careers across 16 different broad segments, as well as lesson plans, presentations and activities related to different career tracks, intended to help the students make their endorsement selections.

The service also offers personal development content on communications, finance and "skills for real world survival."

Three middle schools have begun their pilots, involving students, teachers, counselors and administrators.

"We are excited about the opportunity this platform has provided for our eighth grade students to make informed decisions about their areas of interest as they prepare to enter Frenship High School," said Superintendent David Vroonland. "We appreciate the hard work and efforts the iCEV team has dedicated to designing this platform that will help students meet the [new] requirements."

The online service is also being used in Fannindel and Leander Independent School Districts.

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a writer who covers technology and business for a number of publications. Contact her at dian@dischaffhauser.com.

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