Pathways to Prosperity Grants Will Support 23 New High School Programs Beginning in 2017

Date Posted: Monday, December 5th, 2016
Categories:  Former Governor Jack Markell (2009-2017) Office of the Governor

State investing $450,000 in preparing students in key industries

Wilmington, DE – Governor Markell today announced $450,000 in private and public grants to support new high school pathway programs. This effort expands on the statewide Pathways to Prosperity initiative to prepare all students to excel in key fields that offer good job opportunities in the new economy.

The Delaware Department of Education, in partnership with Delaware Business Roundtable Education Committee members, including Bank of America, has awarded more than $450,000 in competitive funding that will support students as they enroll in advanced coursework and training in environmental science, nursing assistant, and teacher preparation programs, raising the number of pathways to 14. This funding will also expand opportunities for students to pursue training in current pathways, including finance, IT/networking, health care, and engineering. The new programs begin in the next school year, 2017-18.

Grant funds are used by school districts to implement career and technical education programs as part of a larger state effort to connect our public education system, post-secondary institutions, and the employer community. Students take hundreds of hours of specialized instruction and hands-on training in their pathways, receiving the opportunity to graduate with work experience, college credit, and industry credentials that are most relevant to those industries. That means a head start on getting a job and earning a degree.

“The path to middle-class security is not what it was thirty years ago and our approach to career preparation can’t be either,” said Markell, who made the announcement at A.I. du Pont High School, which received new funding for the Academy of Finance program. “Together we can ensure that all of our students are on a path to fulfill their educational goals and career aspirations.”

The state partners with the business community to align pathway curriculums to employer needs and to provide internship opportunities for hundreds of students during the school year and summer. The Governor’s Pathways programs currently serve about 5,800 students across 38 high schools, increasing from fewer than 2,500 students the prior school year and just one class of about 30 students only two years ago. This third round of grants will fund 23 pathway programs in 16 high schools. Since 2015, more than $1.5 million has been allocated to support these opportunities.

“Across the nation, median income is declining, the poverty rate is rising, and the youth unemployment rate is consistently double the unemployment rate for the country. Bank of America is proud to support workforce development and education opportunities – like Delaware Pathways – that will put young people on a path to success,” said Chip Rossi, Delaware Market President for Bank of America.

Pathways are developed in partnership with Delaware employers and institutions of higher education. The Department of Education provides curriculum support for each pathway, as well as training for teachers to successfully implement the coursework. In addition, the Department is working on agreements with Delaware colleges and universities to ensure that students who complete the new programs will be eligible for college credit at one or more institutions of higher education in the state.

“We appreciate the support provided by the Delaware Business Roundtable Education Committee, and are pleased to work with Delaware employers to expand career pathways for all students,” said Secretary of Education Steven Godowsky. “Providing students with academic and technical skills in combination with meaningful work experiences will help them to find success after high school.”

School districts use funding in a variety of ways to support students and staff, and to provide the services and materials required to offer advanced coursework and hands-on training opportunities with Delaware employers.

“It is essential that we integrate employers into our education system to ensure that we understand the skills most valued in today’s economy,” said Markell. “I applaud the district administrators, teachers, higher education leaders, and employers who have made it a top priority to expand career pathways for all of Delaware’s youth.”

New Pathway Grant Awards Beginning in School Year 2017-18

Appoquinimink School District
Appoquinimink High School – K-12 Teacher Academy
Middletown High School – K-12 Teacher Academy

Caesar Rodney School District
Caesar Rodney High School – K-12 Teacher Academy

Cape Henlopen
Cape Henlopen High School – K-12 Teacher Academy

Capital School District
Dover High School – Environmental and Natural Resource Science
Dover High School – K-12 Teacher Academy
Dover High School – Nurse Assisting

Colonial School District
William Penn High School – Environmental and Natural Resource Science
William Penn High School – K-12 Teacher Academy

Indian River School District
Indian River High School – K-12 Teacher Academy
Sussex Central High School – K-12 Teacher Academy

Lake Forest School District
Lake Forest High School – Manufacturing Engineering Technology

Laurel School District
Laurel High School – K-12 Teacher Academy

Milford School District
Milford High School – Academy of Finance
Milford High School – K-12 Teacher Academy

Polytech School District
Polytech High School – K-12 Teacher Academy

Red Clay School District
AI DuPont High School – Academy of Finance
Conrad School of Science – Nurse Assisting
Thomas McKean High School – Environmental and Natural Resource Science
Thomas McKean High School – K-12 Teacher Academy
Thomas McKean High School – Manufacturing Engineering Technology

Smyrna School District
Smyrna High School – Academy of Finance
Smyrna High School – K-12 Teacher Academy

New and Expanded Pathways

Environmental Science and Natural Resources
The Environmental and Natural Resources Science (ENRS) program of study provides students with the scientific principles, concepts, and methodologies required to understand the interrelationships of the natural world, identify and analyze environmental problems both natural and human-made, evaluate the relative risks associated with these problems, and examine alternative solutions for resolving or preventing them. The program prepares students for a variety of careers including environmental engineer, environmental science and protection technician, geological and petroleum technician, natural sciences manager, wildlife biologist, and zoologist.

Nursing Assisting
The Nurse Assisting program of study engages students in open-ended problem solving in which they study topics such as medical terminology, human anatomy, and physiology. Students are trained in areas such as medical mathematics, communication, safety practices, legal responsibilities, and teamwork. In addition, students will develop technical skills, such as providing personal care of residents while taking care of their environmental and psychosocial needs. Students will identify signs and symptoms that require alerting other members of the healthcare teams such as choking or a significant change in vital signs. The program prepares students for a career as a certified nurse assistant (CNA), patient care technician, home health aide, licensed practical nurse (LPN), or registered nurse (RN) in acute or long term care settings.

K-12 Teacher Academy
The K-12 Teacher Academy program of study prepares students for careers in elementary and secondary education. Observation opportunities in a variety of age and discipline settings, as well as special needs and non-classroom settings, provide practical experiences while enriching their learning. Students participate in a long-term placement during their senior year, which allows for in-depth experiences in a classroom setting.

Academy of Finance
The Academy of Finance engages students in the world of financial services through courses focusing on banking and credit, financial planning, accounting, economics, and entrepreneurship. Students gain career knowledge through a series of work-based learning activities that are conducted in school and outside of the classroom. Completion of the program and work experience is validated with a NAFTrack industry-recognized certification. Courses introduce students to a wide array of careers such as personal financial advisor, tax preparation specialist, accountant, financial analyst, loan officer, account representative, insurance agent, and claims representative.

Manufacturing Engineering Technology
The Manufacturing Engineering Technology program engages students in open-ended problem solving where they learn and apply the engineering design process, use industry-standard technology and software, and apply math, science, and engineering standards to hands-on projects. Students work both individually and in teams to explore a broad range of engineering topics including mechanisms, the strength of structures and materials, and automation. Students develop skills in problem solving, research, and design while learning strategies for design process documentation, collaboration, and presentation. Work-based learning experiences and industry-mentored projects are included in each course.

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