FORT MITCHELL, Ky. — A new program launching at Beechwood Independent Schools encourages students to begin preparing for their future careers as early as elementary school.
EDGE is a program “rooted in the idea that our students need educational design that is geared toward experience,” superintendent Mike Stacy wrote in a recent letter to members of the community. It allows students to select one of eight paths to pursue with extra focus throughout their time in the school system.
Black Shepherd, a senior at Beechwood High School, won’t be able to participate in the program but said he thinks it’s a good idea.
“If you’re interested in something and you’re able to go into it, you can figure out if you love it,” he said.
The paths are: Design, computer science, engineering, culinary, boomed, performing arts, fine arts and entrepreneurship.
Elementary schoolers get a sample of all, according to district officials. Middle schoolers will be asked to complete a special seminar course where they solve a challenge based on the path they’re most interested in.
In high school, the path becomes a minor. Students aren’t bound to stick with the first one they pick, but they are able to get firsthand experience and pursue internships with the district’s community partners.
“The goal is to expose our kids to as many things as we can to make them well-rounded and for themselves to get excited about a potential career in high school,” biology teacher Mike Gerst said.
Ellen Bates, who works with the Kentucky Career Center, said she thought it was a positive step for the district.
“The sooner we can get students thinking about what career possibilities are out there, the more they’ll be engaged in the workforce later on,” she said.