CTE in TSD

CTE is not just another education acronym. It refers to “Career and Technical Education,” an area of study that is gaining more notice among students, teachers, educators and business leaders. But what is it and what does it look like in Thompson School District? Simply put, CTE classes are designed to prepare students for work.

Those of us of a certain age are familiar with the vocational education programs that taught the trades, such as plumbing, welding and auto mechanics. These days, many students want a career pathway in high school but they also enroll in certificate programs or two or four-year degree programs after high school.

Thompson School District offers six CTE pathways to guide students to the courses most relevant to their future careers. Some of the courses in each pathway even provide college credit at no cost to the student. The pathways are:

  • Agriculture & Natural Resources
  • Business & Public Administration
  • Health Sciences & Public Safety
  • Hospitality, Human Services and Education
  • Skilled Trades
  • STEM, Arts, Design and Information Technology

More information can be found on our website: https://www.thompsonschools.org/Page/16494

In addition to our current offerings, an exciting new apprenticeship opportunity will be available to TSD high school students next school year through a partnership with CareerWise Colorado and local companies. Students can enter into a three-year learning experience that combines classroom study, hands-on training and paid meaningful work for a company in their area of interest. Students are able to earn while they learn and come out prepared for careers in high-demand industries that pay average salaries around $50,000.

The CareerWise modern youth apprenticeship program is modeled after long-standing successful programs like that in Switzerland, where nearly three-quarters of high school students participate in apprenticeships, regardless if they pursue higher education. Whether a student enters the workforce immediately after high school or decides to continue their formal schooling, an apprenticeship experience will help them further their career goals.

I am thrilled that we are able to bring CareerWise Colorado to Thompson School District students and I am thankful to our dedicated CTE staff for pursuing this partnership. TSD is one of a handful of school districts across Colorado offering this modern youth apprenticeship opportunity to students. To learn more about CareerWise, please visit https://www.careerwisecolorado.org/

Lori Hvizda Ward
President
Thompson School District Board of Education

EdTech Spotlights: Stacy Libal, GT Teacher, Flips with Google Classroom

Teachers typically use Google Classroom for home learning opportunities, whole-class activities, and/or discussion threads.  It’s a great way to push content to students and share thinking.  Libal turns that model on it’s head to help meet the differentiated needs of her GT students, during their regular classroom time, even when she’s off site.

Libal leverages Google Classroom, offering enrichment to students they can access any time throughout their school-day.  She uses videos to flip the learning for new concepts students will be introduced to in their next GT sessions.  It’s a simple idea with genius outcomes.   Students can stay within the content area during regular class time, while helping to prepare for their next GT class, contributing to projects, conducting research, and more.

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Stacy’s split FTE means 20 students in 2 different schools are vying for her time and attention, even when she’s out of the building.  Google Classroom allows Libal to be there for both students and teachers, 100% of the time.  GT students need her whenever they complete work early.  Classroom teachers are tasked with presenting new and interesting learning opportunities to this both exciting and challenging population.  Stacy has turned to a well-honed tool with a new purpose in mind.  Her flipped model is simple, straight-forward, and innovative.  She’d love to help you get started, so reach out any time!

By Jeannie Sponheim

This post originally published Dec. 15, 2017, on tsdtech.org

EdTech Spotlights: Carin Barrett of BHS, MakerSpace in action

“It’s better than sitting on your phone… [You can] give back to people who are less fortunate and it’s nice knowing that you can give back to the community.” Savannah, a 9th grader at Berthoud High School, gave an honest answer for why she loves spending time in the school’s MakerSpace.  Carin Barrett, Librarian and Social Studies teacher at BHS, started this program last school year as a way to teach “Philanthropy as Civic Engagement” and, most importantly, kindness.

MakerSpace is a popular and growing program throughout education and our district schools.  The simple way to define them is a space with resources for students to create.  Make explains “Makerspaces combine manufacturing equipment, community, and education for the purposes of enabling community members to design, prototype and create manufactured works that wouldn’t be possible to create with the resources available to individuals working alone.”

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Carin, along with Library Assistant Michelle Trujillo, utilize their MakerSpace for students to collaborate, design, and build products that will help those in need.  It’s why their program is called “Make for Good.”  Over the past year, students have created pillowcases for a children’s hospital and Joseph’s House, fidget blankets for dementia patients, stuffed animals and blankets for charities, pillowcase dresses for Africa, and more projects that continue to grow.

As students are coming in and out of the space throughout the day, during off hours or spare time, one wonders how they were able to get so many students invested in the idea.  Part of the answer is that their time counts toward volunteer hours.  Barrett found value in that approach because, not only does it help students maximize their time, but she also explained “the opportunity to do good always exists.  I believe making service-oriented activities something that one doesn’t have to officially set aside time for… makes students more able to imagine integrating service into their everyday lives as adults more easily.”  She also explained on the program’s website, BHSMakeForGood.org, “A study by United Health Group says that 76% of people who have volunteered in the past twelve months say that volunteering has made them feel happier, and 94% of people report that it improves their mood. 78% of volunteers say that it has lowered their stress levels.”  In speaking with Savannah and other students collaborating in the MakerSpace, this concept was absolutely evident.

It takes some time, funds, and energy to get a project like this going in a school.  Carin provided some helpful tips in getting started.  “Donor’s Choose is a good option for getting materials, but reaching out to parents and the community might also be useful here, as sewing machines, knitting and crochet tools, and the like, might be things people have that they would be happy to send to someplace where it will be used for something like this.” She reiterated the value of including the community in the project, when possible.  “I have also solicited quite a bit of monetary donations to purchase making materials via grant applications and a TEF fundraiser, as well as accepting some specific donations from the community – everything made in the space uses donated funds.”

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Another aspect of the developing momentum for MakerSpace is to get students excited and ready to try new ideas.  She gives a presentation to a set of classes at the beginning of the year to reach every student, then advertises through announcements and social media for upcoming projects.  She also contacts organizations like Ryan’s Case for Smiles and Little Dresses for Africa, which have year-round projects, as well as local initiatives.  These can often be successfully started through social media, especially Facebook and Twitter.

After seeing “Make For Good” in action, there is no doubt that students are motivated and excited to collaborate and create for others.  If you are interested in starting a MakerSpace, or integrate some of its ideas, in your school, feel free to contact Carin Barrett, EdTech TSD, or other MakeSpace teachers in Thompson School District.  Please visit BHSMakeForGood.org for more ideas and understanding of the program.

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By Joe Zappa

This post originally published Dec. 12, 2017, on tsdtech.org

 

EdTech Spotlights: Roger Torrez of WES, using Seesaw

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Roger Torrez, Instructional Technology Coach at Winona Elementary School, supports teachers and students co-creating personalized learning opportunities.  WES is in the process of implementing this versatile tool.  Seesaw plays nicely with others, working on iPads and Chromebooks, as well as linking to a wide variety of apps outside the system.

When teachers create assignments within Seesaw, they record models and work processes.  This supports flipping the classroom when students view videos prior to class.  Parents and teachers communicate on assignments as desired, with the tools shown in the pink area on the right of the image below.

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Parents, students, and teachers share thoughts on student work in words by typing or writing, or by recording audio comments.  This both shortens the feedback loop and opens the input to more than just one evaluator when appropriate.  Communicating in Seesaw can include videos for modeling to parents everything from new approaches to teaching math to specific praise to help modify behaviors at home.

Seesaw uses QR codes like these (live links) Screen Shot 2017-12-01 at 9.00.17 AM.png  Screen Shot 2017-12-01 at 9.00.33 AM.png for sharing information and learning without compromising student data privacy.  Students record their writing to practice fluency, peer edit, and share accomplishments with teachers and family members.  After viewing student work, parents use the app to send congratulations.  QR codes on school posters share behavior expectations.  When teachers record project parameters and directions, students review the video as many times as needed, freeing the teacher to support students at work rather than spending time repeating directions.   QR codes allow access to recordings of project explanations for parents, and sharing videos of work samples during art shows or other parent nights.

For learning activities within the program, Seesaw provides tools that allow teachers to differentiate learning and meet individual student needs.  Teachers can share lessons within Seesaw as well.  The image below shows a word sort that can be done digitally:

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Within the application both students and teachers can use the tools pictured below to record a video or screen cast, snap a photo, insert a link, draw, write a note and more.

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Students record screencasts of themselves solving math problems so others can access the video to learn their approach.  This elevates student experts in the class and increases shared learning for all.  Students also use the videos to engage in number talks exploring why wrong answers are wrong.  Exploring number talks and multiple approaches for solving math problems deepens learning and supports critical thinking skills.

This is just another example of some the resourceful teachers and team work going in TSD schools.  Please contact Roger or Jeannie with questions or for more information.

By Jeannie Sponheim

This post originally published Dec. 1, 2017, on tsdtech.org

 

EdTech Spotlights: Carol Barnes of HPS, with flexible pacing

Walking in to Carol Barnes’s class, you will be immediately struck by the movement, discussions, and technology usage of her students.  These students are engaged right from the start and ready to use devices and converse with other students about their learning.  Barnes, a middle school math teacher at High Plains K-8 School, is on the leading edge of Thompson School District’s mission to personalize learning for all students.

Adopting this type of instruction is no easy feat and allowing middle school students to learn with an increased level of autonomy can build a teacher’s anxiety.  But Carol came to the realization that developing successful education for students means we need to meet them where they are developmentally.  For teenagers, allowing freedom for curiosity and social interactions is a vital part of the learning process, but parameters from the teacher still need to be in place to facilitate academic achievement.  To achieve this, Barnes has integrated flexible pacing in her Math classes.  “This model of flexible pacing has given the student’s the power and control of their education. They can move quickly if they are comfortable or slow down if they are finding it difficult,” she explained.  Students never need to feel stuck on a Math concept.  “Students have also chosen to move on,” Carol said, “and come back to it before frustration hits an all time high. They truly have control and autonomy over their learning and I am a facilitator and source of knowledge.”

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Students meet with Ms. Barnes when ready to prove mastery of a standard.

When asked why she moved to this approach, Barnes explained, “My motivation happened 5 years back when [some students were] struggling with current content because [of] knowledge gaps. I wanted to find a safe and encouraging way for students to go back and fill missing pieces before attempting current content, while not holding back those that were ready.”  Students became more engaged than ever and recognized that the teacher was there to meet their needs, instead of simply teaching Math concepts at a predetermined pace.  “I was sure there was a way to meet all aspects of the spectrum in one room but I knew I would have to let go of the norm.”  There has certainly been a reward to Carol’s courage.

But this method of teaching can be very foreign to students, even if it is beneficial.  When asked how students have responded, Barnes said, “They love it! The students who normally struggle and get discouraged are getting the help and encouragement they need. The students who are [at a higher level] are able to have a challenge and get support and the middle is not forgotten.” Students are bought-in to the process and excited to find their own paths to success through collaboration with their teacher.  “Many students now feel more like math is achievable and manageable,” Carol stated.  Knowing students have that outlook is an incredible feeling for a teacher in any content area.img_1223-e1510348518713.jpg

Consider integrating flexible pacing with your students through utilization of formative assessment tools like iReady or Map.MathShell.org.  When in doubt of how to integrate the process, seek out Carol Barnes, EdTech TSD, the Professional Learning Team, or other teachers using flexible pacing and find out how to make this work with your students.

By Joe Zappa

This post originally published on Nov. 10, 2017, on tsdtech.org

EdTech Spotlights: Christina Feldhus of LEES, VR Field Trip

Innovation flourishes at Thompson School District elementary schools.  Teachers at Laurene Edmonson Elementary School, a STEM school with 1:1 iPads and Nearpod subscription , are truly redefining learning experiences for students.

Before Nearpod, 4th grade teacher Christina Feldhus would have had to submit special requests to take her students to see the Cliff Dwellings at Colorado’s Mesa Verde National Park.  In fact, the preventative distance from Loveland would have made this trip nearly impossible.   But as part of their Colorado history unit, Ms. Feldhus wanted to bring the Cliff Dwellings to life for her students.   She wanted to do more than give a lecture and show slides.  So on a snowy Monday in November, her 4th graders were warm in their classrooms while exploring the inner rooms of the Cliff Dwellings.  I had the privilege of joining them.

She began the lesson by asking students to consider what questions they had about the Cliff Dwellings.  After sharing, they were directed to log onto Nearpod and access the VR (virtual reality) video tour for Mesa Verde.  These fourth graders got right to work.  Armed with their personal questions and a graphic organizer for recording, each child toured the park looking for different things.

One student was looking at construction.  “How do you think those stones are being held together?” he asked me.  I encouraged him to explore further and get a close-up view.  After more investigation, he said, “That looks like mud and water mixed to make a special kind of cement!”  He then went right to work recording his findings.

Another student was looking at the weather.  This VR was recorded on a sunny day and he noted: “The Cliff Dwellings have a lot of shelter too.  It’s not like they were living outside.  I bet when it rained everything was OK because the houses are built into the side of the cliff so all the water ran down and didn’t flood their homes!”  He too went right to work recording his thinking.

Ms. Feldhus found a moment to chat and shared with me that the teachers in her school “are loving using Nearpod on their iPads.”  The lessons are easy to create, and many more exist in a communal bank of lessons created by other teachers.  Students are 100% engaged.  With the availability of VR, students were in control of their learning for this “field trip”.   Not once did the teacher have to ask everyone to “stay together”.  They were freely exploring their own questions, at their own pace.   It’s this kind of innovation that transforms learning for students from traditional sit-and-get to a personalized journey of exploration.

By Jeannie Sponheim

This post originally published on Nov. 8, 2017, on tsdtech.org

EdTech Spotlights: Joe Rein of MVHS, using Google Docs

In this post, Joe Rein, English teacher at Mountain View High School, is showcased.  Joe has changed the writing process with his students, especially in regards to providing instant feedback to students through the use of Google Docs.  While Google Docs is not a new tool for most teachers, its practical and innovative use for the Feedback Loop is not always seen. Using the “Suggesting” and “Comments” function on his students’ Docs, he provides input to guide students in real-time.  Whether he is using this feature during class, or at 9:30 on a Thursday night, students are able to have an ongoing conversation with the teacher about their writing.

“The use of Google Docs changes the writing process from the individual student making a guess at my exact expectations based on a rubric into a collaborative process between me, him or her, and even their peers and sometimes… with their parents as well,” Mr. Rein explained.  “The best part about using Google Docs is that I can provide real time feedback on rough drafts and the writing process.”

Collaboration, a skill significantly valued by today’s most successful companies, is expertly facilitated through Joe’s Google Doc integration.  It also provides an authentic opportunity for personalized learning. “I can meet them right where they are at in the writing process rather than waiting for them to complete a full rough draft,” he stated.  Learning is interactive and deeper.  “Rather than a sit and get, where I tell them ‘here is how you write your paper, here is the proper format, and here is your rubric’ it instead becomes a process where I am analyzing and discussing their thinking with them in real time and they are participants in that discussion rather than receivers of less personal and interactive feedback. It also brings the focus away from purely content and back to the skills that develop critical thinkers.”

Mr. Rein mentioned a fantastic aspect of Docs, which allows for the teacher and student to look through version history and see all of the changes made in the process.  Students have responded well to this new style of the writing process.  “Students have given me overwhelmingly positive feedback,” Joe said. “You see them interacting with me much more during the writing process. When they respond to a comment, or make a change or changes and then ask me to take another look at it this tells me that they have become more engaged with the writing process.”  Best of all has been observing change from students passively changing their text based on teacher commentary to taking an active and engaged role in teacher feedback. “Essentially the dialogue that occurs allows for deeper learning and understanding of why we go through this process,” Mr. Rein explained.

Knowing that students are more engaged than ever in the writing process is a victory in itself.  But for Joe Rein, Google Docs has put students fully in control of their learning with the teacher simply facilitating the process.  Try this with your students, all that is needed is a internet-capable device and the students’ Google Drive.  When in doubt of how to manage the process, seek out Joe Rein, EdTech TSD, or other Google Doc teachers and find out how to make this work with your students.

By Joe Zappa

This post originally published on Oct. 24, 2017, on tsdtech.org

EdTech Spotlights: Thompson Educators

With just two weeks left in school, students at Loveland High School weren’t watching the clock or counting the minutes until summer.  Instead they were taking time to express the impact kindness has had in their school and community through the American Stories project.  It’s been referred to as the Peace of My Mind project, exploring the impact of peace, one story at a time.  We joined right in, eager to contribute.  Due to scheduling, we had to jump the cue and go before other students.  They were so focused on their written statements to accurately share their joyful stories they waved us on, barely looking up from their papers.

Watching these students motivated us to take a moment and reflect on the amazing educators that we have had the opportunity to see every day have a positive impact on the learning and lives of Thompson students.  A culture of innovation, passion, and trust has led countless staff members to implement new ideas in educational technology and instructional design, because they will help students to succeed.  Early on, this motivated us to witness these concepts in action and share them with the rest of the district and community, in order to facilitate collaboration beyond the four walls of TSD schools.  What we weren’t prepared for was the flood of incredible instructional practices shared at TSD, making it impossible to do justice to the overwhelming levels of outside the box thinking of our district’s educators.

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Without even recounting our previous spotlights, we’ve seen Thompson staff inspire creativity with student-centered devices, rethink Presentations of Learning with digital portfolios, use social media to model and inspire positive interactions, develop a culture of non-stop inquiry with flipped classrooms, facilitate moments of high-level critical thinking with STEM projects, provide anytime supports in digital classrooms, and give students the chance to engage with real-world experts in the field through online chats.  We’ve seen first year teachers collaborate with retiring educators to re-think instructional design together through learning management systems like Schoology and Google Classroom.  We’ve seen staff members from one school to another work together, on their own time, to figure out how they can best meet the needs of their students in a not-seen-before way.  We’ve seen content and grade-level teams capture the successes of what they were already doing and figure out what tweaks can take it to the next level.  Dual immersion schools collaborating to engage students in video calls in another language was an incredible thing to witness, and we wish we’d been able to include that story.  Ah well, a great starting point for next year!

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If only we could write a blog post every day, maybe we could spotlight all the inspiring ideas of Thompson educators with the district and community, but even then it probably couldn’t be done.  All in all, EdTech wants to express its gratitude to Thompson staff for inspiring us, each other, the community, and our students in making learning a passionate, creative, and empowering process, helping students rise with the tools that they need to be a positive force in this changing world.

By EdTech TSD, Jeannie Sponheim & Joe Zappa

A Unique Learning Experience

It’s been almost seven months since I joined the Thompson Board of Education, and during that time I’ve learned a lot. More than anything, I’ve learned that I still have much to get my head around. But given this opportunity, I thought it might be interesting to share about my experience so far being a member of this 2017-2018 Thompson Board of Education.

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What’s it like to be on the Board of Education?
As a member, I’ve learned that I have very little power individually; as a collective, the Board Members direct the course of the entire School District. You may have heard the rumor, but it’s true: Board Members don’t get paid. I’ve done a lot more reading than I expected, and I’ve learned about just how much depth lies in terms like “Affective Needs,” “Multi-Tiered Systems of Support” and “Personalized Learning”. They weren’t kidding when they said that being a Board Member would require about twenty hours a week. I’ve met incredibly talented people that bring amazing programs to our schools while at the same time finding clever ways to fund them. Just when I think I’ve finally got a handle on it all, another fantastic program like “Give Next” surprises and impresses. We have a strong, generous and giving community with a wealth of knowledge and experience in making our schools do more with less. It’s an exciting time for Thompson!

What are the other Board Members like?
Each Member has their own personality, but shares one very important trait – they put students first. Each brings a unique perspective and a wealth of experience to the Board and although that may lead to some fierce discussions at times, it ultimately helps one another make better, more educated and balanced decisions. I don’t think any of our Board members are willing to settle for second best. I’ve seen each member be passionate about supporting our employees. They fervently believe that we can most effectively serve student needs by having a fantastic teacher in every classroom. I’ve observed each member recognize that every contribution from every employee, every volunteer and every giver from our community is an integral and critical part of our District’s success. I’ve heard each member express how important it is for our District to run in a financially responsible manner – to focus very, very hard on stretching every dollar that’s spent. We argue a lot, we laugh a lot and we enjoy one another. It’s a great team to be a part of.

So who’s this new guy from Boulder?
Our incoming superintendent, Dr. Marc Schaffer, is a true “Steward Leader.”  I was impressed with him during our district interviews and I’m growing more and more impressed as I watch him “build a runway” as he becomes an integral part of Thompson. Already I’ve observed him “walking the talk” as he starts by meeting people and LISTENING, just like he said he would do during our interviewing process. He has great ideas and great experiences and he’s willing to share those when it makes sense – but not to overwhelm or try to over-impress. He brings a lot of energy and enthusiasm to our District. He values the strengths that we see in our District and wants to support those in a spirit of continuous improvement. We’re going to miss Dr. Scheer and I hope we continue to see a lot of him as he continues to be a vital member of our community. I also believe it’s safe to say that we’re in good hands with our incoming superintendent.

 

 

Marc Seter

Thompson School District Board of Education

Get Ahead With Free College!

Did you know that Thompson School District offers “free college” to high school students?

The formal name of the district’s free college program is Concurrent Enrollment. Follow along to learn more about this great opportunity offered to high school students.20170527_Graduation LHS_1_WEB

What is Concurrent Enrollment?

Concurrent enrollment gives students the opportunity to graduate from high school with college credits and accelerate their progress toward earning advanced degrees and the working world.

Thompson School District pays for the cost of tuition for a maximum of two college classes per semester per student. The parent/student is responsible for the fee(s) and book(s) associated with the course(s). Students in grades 9-12 are eligible. However, we strongly recommend that participating students are in grades 10-12. Some colleges may have an age requirement. Each of the programs is initiated by speaking with the student’s counselor and they also involve an application process.

TSD has concurrent enrollment agreements with a handful of colleges. Students can take college courses that fit into their ICAP at Front Range Community College (FRCC) and Aims Community College. There are other opportunities for college credit to be awarded with limited class options at the University of Colorado-Denver, Colorado Christian University, University of Colorado-Colorado Springs for a specific program called “Project Lead the Way” which specifies in Engineering and Metropolitan State University for the Pro Start program, which specifies in Catering.

There are three ways to earn concurrent enrollment credit:

  1. Career Pathways/Career Academy
  2. High School Select
  3. Campus Select

Let’s talk about Career Pathways and Career Academy!

Career Pathways is a year-long career and technical education program through FRCC. All students earn high school credit and have the option to earn college credit. The tuition is covered by Thompson School District and the parent/student is responsible for associated course fees. Most of the programs are held on the FRCC Larimer Campus in Fort Collins or at the CLC (Thompson School District Admin Building). Classes are held every day – students are placed in the morning from 8:00-10:00am or in the afternoon from 12:30-2:30pm. Transportation is provided to all locations. In-depth, hands-on learning is offered with a cohort of students. Many offer internships, FRCC certificates and/or industry credentials. All students in the Career Pathways Program must take the Accuplacer exam. The programs offered at Front Range Community College are:

  • Animal Technology Automotive Technology and Service
  • Criminal Justice Careers Exploration Culinary Arts
  • Medical Careers Exploration Welding and Metal Fabrication
  • Wildlife, Forestry and Natural Resources

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Career Academy is a year-long career and technical education program through Aims Community College. All students earn high school credit and have the option to earn college credit. The tuition is covered by Thompson School District and the parent/student is responsible for associated course fees. All programs are held at the Aims-Loveland Campus. Classes are held every day.  However, transportation is not provided for this specific program. The programs offered at Aims are:

  • Animation: 9:10am-11:00am M/T/W/TH
  • Graphic Design: 12:45pm-2:35pm M/T/W/TH

Let’s roll on over to discuss the High School Select program…

This program is one of the best options to earn college credit without even leaving the high school campus. It consists of college-level classes taught at the high school by an approved high school teacher or college professor. It offers a convenient location with familiar students and instructors. Tuition is paid for by TSD and the parent/student is responsible for course fee(s) and book(s). In High School Select, TSD offers the courses solely based on enrollment numbers. Students should talk with their high school counselors about what course offerings may be available at their high school. Classes are taught at the college level and students are expected to meet all college-level requirements. The requirements are: to speak with your counselor, fill out an application, recognize prerequisites and appropriate test placement scores. An Accuplacer assessment is needed if the student does not have ACT scores.

Last but not least, our last option for concurrent enrollment is the Campus Select program.

This program is great for the student who is able to drive to the college campus and have the option to take more classes than what is offered at their high school. It includes any course taken at the college level on the college campus. Students will apply to the college and register for classes like a college student. It is recommended to sign up for Guaranteed Transfer (GT) courses in order to ensure that the credit will transfer to most colleges and universities in the state of Colorado. Classes must fit and work within the student’s high school schedule and graduation requirements take precedence. Students must meet all prerequisites and understand that they will be in a college class with other college students. Classes are taught at the college level; most classes will require 6-9 hours of work at home per week. College professors will not know that the student is in high school unless the student tells them. Students may be required to work with classmates outside of class time.

Now that you have read about the concurrent enrollment programs, would you like to know how a student gets enrolled?

First, the student needs to talk to their counselor about taking concurrent enrollment classes and which program they are interested in. Second, students need to update their ICAP (Individual Career and Academic Plan) and Plan of Study on Naviance to reflect that they want to take a concurrent enrollment class. Counselors can assist with this step. TSD will not pay for the course unless it is in their ICAP and Plan of Study.

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For Career Pathways and Career Academy, the student will apply at the beginning of the spring semester for the following school year. Typically during course registration, there are only a certain number of slots for each program.

For the High School Select program, the student will apply at the beginning of the spring semester for the following school year.

Please be aware that students who fail or withdraw will be responsible for repaying tuition costs back to the school district.

For the Campus Select program, students may register for the class(s) they want to take once the college course catalog is released, which is typically 3-4 months prior to the start of the semester.

The final step for the concurrent enrollment program is for the student to see their counselor for the appropriate paperwork. Apply to the appropriate school via online application or paper application. Complete the concurrent enrollment form, take the Accuplacer test if necessary and attach the score or attach the qualifying ACT scores. Return the paperwork to the student’s counselor. Check back later for confirmation of enrollment. If the student is taking a Campus Select class, you must check your college e-mail account regularly, as this is how the school will communicate with you. If you miss a deadline for payment of fees, you will be dropped from the course. Also, when taking Campus Select courses, you will have a few extra steps to do with a new student checklist that will be provided to you. This checklist involves speaking with a college advisor and attending a new student orientation.

What will this look like on my high school transcript?

All 100 level and above college classes will be weighted like AP classes. Example: ENG 121, PSY 101, COM 115.

Career Pathways classes have their own unique credit amount and the grade will be weighted.

High School Select classes will be .5 high school credits and have a weighted grade. Students typically earn 3 college credits.

Campus Select classes will vary from .17-1.0 high school credits, all depending on the number of college credits earned for the course. If it is a 100 level course and above, it will be a weighted grade.

Toward the end of the student’s senior year, when the decision has been made about what college/university they will be attending, the student will need to transfer their earned college credits to that school. They will need to request official transcript(s) from the colleges where the concurrent enrollment credit was earned and have them sent to the college/university they will be attending.

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Advantages of participating in the concurrent enrollment program:

  • Free tuition
  • Good transition to college
  • Earn credits toward your college degree
  • Gain confidence in your ability to succeed in college
  • Campus Select students are fully integrated at FRCC

Cautions to know for participating in the concurrent enrollment program:

  • 6-9 hours of homework per week
  • Transcripts are permanent
  • Poor grades can affect scholarships and financial aid

Please feel free to reach out to your student’s counselor or our College and Career Department for further information.

  • Tyler Schlagel, College and Career Coordinator
    • Phone: 970-613-5098
    • Email: tyler.schlagel@Thompsonschools.org
  • Afton Valerio, College and Career Assistant
    • Phone: 970-613-7575
    • Email: Afton.Valerio@ThompsonSchools.org