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WELCOME Natrona County High Schools are offering a new choice for students beginning in fall of 2014 – par ticipation in an Academy. By choosing to par ticipate, parents and students will be agreeing to travel a more rigorous path towards high school graduation. Choosing an Academy Pathway means to focus one’s elective classes on an area of interest that will better prepare a student for both college and career. Elective studies in the past have often been unfocused for our high school students, and many seniors have taken DAVID less than full academic loads. A student in an Academy APPLEGATE will take a series of related and increasingly challenging NCSD BOARD CHAIR elective classes in order to explore an interest or career option. For some students, this focus will not appear much different than a traditional series of academic courses in high school as they pursue their dreams of attending college. For some students, these focused electives could result in cer tifications in welding or as a nursing assistant, leading to meaningful employment directly after one finishes high school. For other students, focused electives might lead them to a career as a graphic designer or a computer programmer. Academy learning is more than a focused series of electives. Students in Academy settings will encounter classroom and intern experiences that are more engaging and demanding. Seniors will be encouraged to develop and complete Capstone Projects – not as a graduation requirement – but as an Academy requirement. These projects will take many forms– complex welding projects, ar t por tfolios, musical performances, research repor ts, and business internships - but all will involve substantial effor t and require presentations in a public forum. One goal of our school district is that all students will graduate and be prepared for college or a high-skills career. The deployment of Academy oppor tunities in our district is intended to provide each student with a more focused plan of study during high school with the intent of engaging that student and preparing that student for their next step in life. Oppor tunity is usually coupled with hard work, commitment, and a willingness to embrace change. We encourage parents and students to take this challenge and seize this oppor tunity – join an Academy!


INTRODUCTION Academies are Natrona County School District’s (NCSD) high school approach to improve graduates’ success in post high school experiences. In our district the academy initiative is named PATHWAYS, where academies are comprised of small learning communities, joined with community par tners, taught by a team of teacher s from different disciplines, career-themed to include college-preparator y curriculum, and driven by community interests/needs. Academy experiences for students will include: Engaging and rigorous core content and college/career prep curriculum Core curriculum oppor tunities that meet and exceed Hathaway/graduation requirements Learning experiences to include entrepreneur ship, stewardship, and civic responsibility Real world learning experiences based on career themes Showcasing knowledge, skills and abilities attained through capstone projects Oppor tunities to par ticipate in internships and work-based learning experiences within a career interest Leadership oppor tunities to team, design and build using industr y standard equipment, leading to the attainment of industr y recognized cer tifications

Academies in Natrona County will provide the following for our students: Increased graduation rates Increased academic performance and achievement Narrow achievement gaps across the system Improved 21st centur y focus and readiness

Successful smaller learning communities within large high schools Increased career-focused counseling Expanded connections with business and industr y par tners





Architecture, Construction, Manufacturing, and Engineering

Architecture, construction, manufacturing, and engineering are vital components of Wyoming’s economy. These have been and will continue to be strong careers in our state. Students in an ACME pathway, which culminates at the CAPS facility, will work with industr y standard equipment within a unique setting and with industr y partners to advance these skill sets. Students will design and create projects that further their college and career aspirations.


ACME Academy Coach: Mance Hurley Scan this image with a QR Reader on your smar tphone for more information and to view course sequencing possibilities.



Business, Agriculture, and Natural Resources

The Business, Agriculture, and Natural Resources academy focuses on business and related careers. The five pathways can be mixed and matched to create a personal plan of study for each student. For some students this academy will prepare them for jobs after high school, while some pathways will lead to college majors and degrees.


BANR Academy Coach: Patti Kimble Scan this image with a QR Reader on your smar tphone for more information and to view course sequencing possibilities.



Creative Arts, Communication, and Design

The Creative Arts, Communication, and Design students will work in a studio setting in order to create original artwork. Students will design and create portfolios that meet requirements established by National Portfolio Days, AP and IB programs. These portfolios will be submitted to colleges, scholarship panels, and professionals by the end of their senior year. Teachers and community partners will mentor students.


CACD Academy Coach: Molly Voris Scan this image with a QR Reader on your smar tphone for more information and to view course sequencing possibilities.



Health Sciences and Human Services

The Health Sciences and Human Ser vices Academy (HSHS) will prepare students for college and careers in the fastest growing fields in the job market. Careers in Health Sciences and Human Ser vices have a direct impact on the health, safety and well being of people of all ages. This academy will offer the opportunities to pursue all interest in the medical fields while securing certifications. Pathways to careers in early childhood education, counseling, psychology, fire science, law and law enforcement will also be offered.


HSHS Academy Coaches: Bryan Aivazian * Mark Hileman * Scan this image with a QR Reader on your smar tphone for more information and to view course sequencing possibilities.


CAPSTONE EXPERIENCE Seniors will be encouraged to design their own Capstone Experience.

A Capstone will include: The Capstone experience Showcase Project (a student-designed project that should be centered around one or more of the following: includes research and a product that is presented to Internship an authentic audience) Community Service Collaborative Teamwork (other students, teachers, Industry Certification employers, community members, industry Authentic Project or members, etc.) Problem


GRADUATE PROFILE Students graduating from Natrona County Schools are leaving with more than just a diploma. They will also have skills in seven distinct areas that have been identified and developed by Casper community members with Natrona County School District staff. This group deemed these as successful traits for people after high school.

Independent Lifelong Learning Core academic foundation Fine Arts education Preparation for higher education or high skills jobs

Digital Age Literacy Basic scientific, economic, and technological literacies Visual and information literacies Multicultural literacy and global awareness

Inventive Thinking Analytical thinking and problem solving Adaptability, managing complexity, and self-direction

Effective Communication Teaming, collaboration, and interpersonal skills Interactive communication

High Productivity Prioritizing, planning, and managing for results Effective use of real-world tools Ability to produce relevant, high-quality products

Scan this image with a QR Reader on your smar tphone to read the full NCSD Graduate Profile.

Healthful Living Physical, social, and emotional well-being

Stewardship Personal, social, and civic responsibility Commitment to compassion and caring for others


Center for Advanced & Professional Studies

CAPS is a 21st Century learning facility where every student will be engaged in high-end pathways, where advanced and dual credit courses can be accessed and instruction will be integrated into the pathways collaboratively across the secondary system. Career exploration will begin at the middle-school level with the development of a six-year educational plan. Students at any Natrona County high school will be able to take advantage of the pathways available through CAPS. Students attending classes at the CAPS campus will be encouraged to complete a capstone experience.

CAPS will be located on Wyoming Blvd., next to the CY Middle School campus. Construction will begin in the spring of 2014.






Scan this image with a QR Reader on your smartphone for more standards.

English/Language Arts Writing: Use the writing process for argumentative, literary analysis, research, Speaking and Listening: Use the communication process effectively in multiple contexts Media Literacy: Use an understanding of media to interpret, analyze, evaluate and produce a media communication Mathematics and Statistics Problem solving skills Logical and statistical reasoning skills Data, statistics, and probability Communication skills in learning about and explaining mathematics *FROM COLLEGE BOARD STANDARDS FOR COLLEGE SUCCESS


Scan this image with a QR Reader on your smartphone for more advice.

Plan your high school courses wisely The courses you take in high school show colleges what kind of goals you set for yourself. Colleges will be more impressed by respectable grades in challenging courses than by outstanding grades in easy ones.

Checklist for making the most of high school Take classes recommended for college preparation. Establish goals for each school year. Explore careers through research and experiences. Do internships in careers you are interested in pursuing. Never stop learning - education is a lifelong pursuit.

The GPA myth If you’re playing the GPA game and taking a light schedule that isn’t challenging, it will catch up to you at the college level very quickly. Course selection can also affect admissions test scores. If you just go for a good GPA, you’ll be less prepared for college.






Natrona County School District #1 970 N. Glenn Rd. Casper, Wyoming 82601

www.NCSDACADEMIES .org (307) 253-5253 970 N. GLENN RD., CASPER, WYOMING, 82601 FACEBOOK.COM/NATRONASCHOOLSTRANSFORMATION TWITTER.COM/NCSDTRANSFORM Scan this image with a QR Reader on your smartphone for Frequently Asked Questions about NCSD’s Pathways

Scan this image with a QR Reader on your smartphone to read more in-depth about NCSD’s Pathways

For Academy inquiries: General questions: at Kelly Walsh High School: at Midwest High School: at Natrona County High School: at Roosevelt High School:

Pathways: Academies of Natrona County Guide #2