Louisiana’s Jump Start is the new paradigm for career and technical education (CTE), requiring students to attain an industry-based credential in order to graduate high school. It is the state’s new program for school districts, colleges, and businesses to collaborate in providing career courses and workplace experiences to high school students. Students have the opportunity in high school to earn industry-valued, industry-promulgated credentials in the career fields most likely to lead to high-wage jobs, while preparing them to continue their post-secondary education in 2-year and 4-year colleges and career development.
During the first two years of high schools, students should focus on building on the knowledge and skills they gained in previous grades. Every 9th and 10th grade student (beginning 2014-2015 and thereafter) will take core academic classes to work towards a diploma. Following the student’s 10th grade year, a student may choose to work toward a Jump Start TOPS Tech Pathway or pursue the TOPS University Pathway. Decisions are made with counseling and guidance, based on the student’s interests, capabilities, and ambitions.
Student selecting the TOPS University Pathway will continue to pursue core academic credits that mirror the TOPS Core curriculum. Students may also complete Jump Start courses as electives and earn an industry-based credential.
Students pursuing the Jump Start TOPS Tech Pathway may earn basic or advanced credentials in statewide or regional career areas or equivalent credentials through dual enrollment coursework (Certificates of Applied Sciences, Certificates of Technical Studies, or Technical Diplomas). Students graduating with a Jump Start TOPS Tech Career Diploma will be required to attain Jump Start statewide or regional credentials.
Jump Start courses and training will be offered to all high school students regardless of diploma pathway. Students may choose both pathways.
For additional information, contact the school guidance counselor or visit the Jump Start web portal at http://www.louisianabelieves.com/courses/all-things-jump-start.