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Authentic Learning Experiences Provides Road Ready Workforce

In recent years there has been a shift in how education has been purveyed throughout our community. In the past, secondary education entered the community as a service provider geared to produce well educated, next generation citizenry of the highest potential. But today, while the main purpose of education is the same, educators are exploring new ways to bring real world context to the classroom.

So what is Authentic Learning? It's an instructional approach that allows students to explore, discuss, and meaningfully construct concepts and relationships in contexts that involve real-world problems and projects that are relevant to the learner.

"Preparing students for LIFE after high school requires collaborative efforts between business, education, and lawmakers" - Emanuel Young, Community Partnership Coordinator at Rockwood School District

Todays students are taking real world issues and problems and working to solve them, developing solutions applicable to the world or community around them.

Last week Progress 64 West hosted the program, Building Possibilities, providing insight on how sharing practical expertise and special talents with students translate into experiential learning - a community connection designed to enhance educational curriculums, making learning more meaningful and relevant for students.

The panel gave updates on initiatives that are happening within Rockwood, Parkway, as well as districts in St. Charles County. There are many opportunities for high school kids to access experiential learning. They don't all fit into the "college" box. Katie Vargas from Francis Howell said the kids of today are looking for career paths in which they are passionate about. "Experiential learning gives them the opportunity to try out a career and see if it fits. All of these districts offer these opportunities and are always looking for ways to create more.



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