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Governor’s Institute at Penn College Serves 88 Educators

Laura Runyan, left, and Marilee Close, of the Bald Eagle Area School District, work on a plan for incorporating Career Education and Work standards into classroom instruction in their district.The fifth Governor’s Institute on Career Education and Work drew 88 teachers and school district administrators to Pennsylvania College of Technology in June.

The institute, which is funded by a $101,520 grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Education and facilitated by the college’s Outreach for K-12 Office, helps the state’s school districts implement state-mandated Career Education and Work standards into their curricula.

“Implementing the Career Education and Work standards is essential in showing students how the work they do in school is relevant to careers,” said Don C. Adams, assistant superintendent of the Williamsport Area School District. “Student engagement in learning soars when school work is connected to future employment opportunities.”

The goals of the state’s Career Education and Work standards are to help students understand themselves, understand the work world around them, understand how to get a job and keep it, and help teach them basic skills to create a job if they can’t find one they want. All school districts in Pennsylvania are required to implement the standards, which were enacted by the state Department of Education in 2006.

Williamsport Area School District was represented at the Governor%E2%80%99s Institute for Career Education and Work by, from left, Kevin Choate, Susan Hunsinger, Barbara Rizzo, Ted Piwowar, Carol Watson, Michelle Bennett, Cindy Schuyler, Don Adams, Charisse Sick, Seth Decker, Brandon Pardoe and Marc Berry.Jeannette F. Carter, director of Outreach for K-12, said the institute’s staff taught participants to build a plan to implement the Career Education and Work standards in their home districts and taught strategies to help individual students learn the process of making choices that will be right for them. A keynote address was offered by Todd Erdley, CEO and president of Videon Central.

“Through the Governor’s Institute, our team did comprehensive short- and long-term planning that will guide us in implementing the Career Education and Work standards,” Adams said. “Our short-range plan includes several ideas that we will begin implementing this year K-12. The long-range plan focuses on course restructuring, curriculum development, and revising of high school advisories and graduation projects to engage students in thinking deeply about their future careers.”

Central Columbia School District was represented at the institute for the second time, further developing its plans to implement the Career Education and Work standards with support from several grants the school district has received.

A group of educators from Central Columbia School District attended the Governor%E2%80%99s Institute for Career Education and Work at Pennsylvania College of Technology. Standing, from left, are Bill Forsythe, Jeff Groshek, Greg Laubach, John Kurelja, Susan Forsythe and Scott Osborne. Sitting, from left, are Jen Bates, Tara Smargiassi, Sue Gill and Carole Connolley.“We are rolling out Career Pathways in the 2009-10 school year, and this institute gave us a wonderful opportunity to finalize our plans,” said John Kurelja, curriculum coordinator for the Central Columbia School District. “We have looked comprehensively at how we can make our students’ experience more rigorous and relevant and have altered our curriculum in all areas to facilitate this.”

To learn more about services offered to school districts through the Outreach for K-12 Office at Penn College, visit online , e-mail or call 570-320-8003.

For general information about Penn College, visit on the Web , e-mail or call toll-free 800-367-9222.

For more information about grant-funding opportunities, faculty and staff may contact the Grants and Contracts Office at ext. 7562 or through its Web portal.

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