At Shenendehowa High School we have an alternative education program for students in grades 10-12. This program provides an academically challenging environment to students who have difficulty in a traditional classroom setting. The students/parents in this program volunteer to participate and agree to certain academic, behavioral and attendance expectations. Over the last 9 years of this program the expectations to attend post-graduate studies has greatly increased. Because of these interests the administrator in charge of the program requested support from the counselors to develop lessons and counseling specific to the group in support and their targeted goals. As we considered possible activities and lessons for the program we felt it was important to hear directly from the students. In order that we were be able to get student feedback, a short survey was developed and administered prior to preparing lessons. The survey results indicated that there was an interest on the part of the students to learn more about potential careers and building career ready skill sets. Over a six week period lessons were developed specific to Resume Writing, Career Exploration, Preparing for an Interview, Interview Process, and the Naviance and College Application Process. These lessons were designed to support age appropriate skills and align with the ASCA Mindsets and Behaviors that were chosen for this age group. As a result of the activities students in the alternative education program moving forward will all be receiving additional supports from the counselors related to post graduate plans. Each of the students will develop individual graduation and post graduate plans. These plans will be kept electronically utilizing their repository in the Naviance software. As part of the program evaluation we discussed doing some post-graduate tracking of the students in the program. This follow-up will be done starting in the 2016-2017 school year.
The counselors who participated in this group were either assigned grade level representatives to the Alternative Education Program or support counselor interns. Teachers also collaborated and supported the groups and their activities as part of the classroom.