Paths to Success
How to Jumpstart Your Child's Future
You want to help your child be ready and excited for high school and beyond. But getting there can be overwhelming, especially given all the changes this school year. The good news is, success is not a destination—it’s a journey with multiple paths! Whether that path leads to a four-year college or a technical program, the same is true for all—a strong education is the foundation to a fulfilling career.
Did you Know?
According to research, being on track in 9th grade is the greatest predictor of high school graduation.
To get a gut check on your middle schooler's math and reading skills, have them take the Readiness Check. As part of the results, you get videos and activities to support learning at home!Get the Readiness Check here »
Know The Milestones
Check in regularly (even virtually) with your teen’s teachers and counselors on a plan for high school graduation. Know application deadlines and take relevant tests. This can keep your child motivated and improve grades.
Nurture Life Skills
Lean into how your teen is feeling—for example, ask them to share their high and low points of the day. Get support to strengthen life skills like organization, communication, and managing stress.
REFLECT ON INTERESTS
Talk to your teen about their strengths, passions, and the kinds of jobs they can see themselves doing in the future. Ask them questions like “What makes you happy?” “Is there a career you want to learn more about?” Help them see the connection between the choices they make now and their future.
CONSIDER CLASS CHOICES
Find a balance of high school classes based on interest and level. Maybe your child is ready for advanced placement (AP) classes or is interested in career and technical education (CTE) courses–both can equal college credit which saves time and money! CTE AP courses such as environmental science and computer design are also available in some schools.
College, career and technical education costs are a lot but knowing what to expect can reduce stress. Explore financial aid options and how FAFSA works. Research smaller colleges that can offer a great education and more scholarship opportunities. Learn about the process for transferring schools. Over one third of students change colleges and discover that some class credits won’t transfer (lost time and money)!
Find helpful resources to support academic, social, and emotional learning.
*A Year into the Pandemic: Parents’ Perspectives on Academics, State Assessments, and Education, Learning Heroes and National PTA
**NAEP, The Nation’s Report Card 2019
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