A Note from Superintendent Tom Boasberg:
“We not only want our kids prepared for life after high school … We want them to see a great future ahead for themselves and have the educational quality, support and resources to make those dreams come true.”
Dear DPS Community,
On Wednesday, more than 3,500 of our eighth-graders got to explore the world of opportunity that their education opens to them. Not in a textbook or on a laptop or in a classroom — they saw it up close, and had the chance to talk directly with the people who know most about it.
Since 2009, we’ve hosted a citywide Eighth-Grade Career Fair that includes a broad spectrum of fields and features professionals from hundreds of Colorado businesses and colleges who speak to students one-on-one about their future aspirations.
Eighth grade is an important transition time, and we’ve worked hard in DPS to help students actively explore their interests and make their high school choices more relevant to their desired future.
We want our kids to be excited about the transition to high school and feel a strong connection to everything that’s possible through a good education. They hear how important an education is to their future all the time — we want them to see and feel the connection.
“This event is important to me because I can figure out what interests me by talki ng to people,” said Nya Woods, a student at Highline Academy. “I get to ask questions and businesses can prepare me for what to expect in my potential future career.”
For many students, the fair is the first introduction to our extensive Career Connect program. We’ve invested heavily in giving our high school students a clear and compelling connection to the career paths in rapidly growing areas of our economy. That means getting them out of the classroom and into internships, job shadowing and college campuses for college-level courses. It drives up student engagement and enthusiasm, and we see the results of that investment every spring.
Last May, the DPS Class of 2016 was Denver’s largest graduating class ever. There’s still a lot of work to do, though, and that’s why we made College and Career Readiness a priority in our Denver Plan 2020 , and it’s a reason we’ve raised the bar on our high school graduation requirements for the Class of 2021 – this year’s eighth-graders. Jobs requiring training beyond high school are growing three times as fast as jobs requiring only a high school diploma. In 2020, 74% of all Colorado jobs — three million of them — will require education beyond high school.
That’s also why our Denver Community Planning and Advisory Committee included in the 2016 proposal on Tuesday’s ballot funds for significantly increasing our career and technical education (CTE) offerings to provide career training and work experiences to our students.
We not only want our kids prepared for life after high school, we want to inspire them to dream big dreams. We want them to see a great future ahead for themselves and have the educational quality, support and resources to make those dreams come true.
Read the full Our DPS Weekly newsletter online: Preparing for Life After High School