Your school may have a well-designed approach for integrating college and career-readiness standards into all subject areas with vertical alignment throughout all grades. That plan may even provide teachers with ideas for implementing that approach in context. That plan may have measurable goals and timelines. But then again, it’s entirely possible that this just does not describe your school . . . yet.

Acclaimed education author and speaker Dr. Karin Hess has spent a lot of time considering just what, exactly, college and career-readiness (CCR) means, aside from being a long list of skills and traits we’re meant to impart to our students. Inspired by a conversation with her college-aged son, Dr. Hess drew up a CCR framework to better define educators’ goals in preparing students for the future, as well as the pathway for getting there. It’s a framework that helps educators put pen to paper when it comes down to planning for student achievement—there’s even a worksheet to use with your PLC!

Download Dr. Hess’s white paper, 3 Essential College and Career-Ready Skill Sets.

Think Student-Centered

Crucially, this college and career-readiness framework hinges on the need to re-envision our approach to teaching standards—not necessarily the standards themselves—in order to move from “teacher-directed learning to student-initiated and ‘owned’ learning,” a key evolution that paves the way for three crucial skill sets that support students’ ability to

  1. Tackle Cognitively Demanding Learning Tasks
  2. Develop Independence as Learners
  3. Initiate, Sustain, Extend and Deepen Learning

CCR Framework

Download the Free White Paper

Download 3 Essential College and Career-Ready Skill Sets Supporting Deeper Learning to Better Prepare Students for Life after High School by Karin K. Hess, Ed.D., which includes a self-inventory for assessing your own curriculum and instruction in light of the CCR framework. Share the article with your colleagues to jump-start your school’s conversation about CCR, then come back and let us know how you’ve used Dr. Hess’s ideas in the comments!