Web Extra: Calcasieu asks for a waiver on the career diploma

From the Office of the Calcasieu Parish School Board:

The Calcasieu Parish School System has requested a one year waiver from the implementation of new Career Diploma.  It is our intention to use the 2009-2010 school year to research, develop, and plan for the full implementation of the Career Diploma in the 2010-2011 school year.  Calcasieu's internal planning and development will also include coordination with other parish school systems in our region as well as with local business and industry.

Our intent is to create a broad range of career majors that would be (1) readily available to all Calcasieu students, (2) linked to local business/industry needs, and (3) as compatible as possible with career majors being planned and developed in other school systems in our region. Coordination with other regional school systems will be critical when considering the mobility and relocation of students during their high school careers.

Students who will be incoming freshman this year in Calcasieu high schools will be assigned courses that meet the academic course requirements of all three curriculum tracks including (1) the LA Core 4 Diploma, (2) the Basic Core Diploma, and (3) the Career Diploma.  The academic courses required for the Basic Core Diploma (minimum graduation requirements) and the Career Diploma do in fact mirror one another closely throughout the first two years in high school. The freshman courses include basic algebra, English I, basic social studies such as world geography and basic science such as biology or physical science.

Because our standard academic courses are also required in the freshman year of the Career Diploma curriculum, incoming freshman will not be penalized in any way by the decision to waive the official implementation of the career diploma in 2009-2010.

A wide variety of career majors and industrial based certifications have been in place in Calcasieu for many years.  Expansion of available courses and facilities are on-going.  Close coordination with local business and industry remains a high priority.  Coordination with SOWELA has also been an on-going process with articulations of many courses. Calcasieu and SOWELA have also worked in close partnership to enable high school students during their senior year to attend SOWELA while completing high school graduation requirements and getting a head start on an associate degree.

Our wavier will give us sufficient time to accomplish the following tasks:

  • Research, study and develop relevant policy/procedures.
  • Plan and launch an informational campaign for all stakeholders.
  • Develop appropriate and innovative curricula/courses.
  • Select and prepare instructors.
  • Acquire appropriate supplies and equipment.
  • Evaluate student records.
  • Counsel students/parents.
  • Revise school master schedules to include new curricula/courses.
  • Develop reallocation plans as pertains to funds, facilities, and human resources.
  • Coordinate fully with local business/industry and regional school systems.