Educators: Add “Adaptable Skills” to the Educational Mix; Advice From Advanced Placement Capstone Students

An education committed solely to acquiring skills and knowledge required for specific jobs — calculus, chemistry and American government, for example — has limitations. Schools that also instill adaptable skills students will need in many workplace contexts — written and oral communication, critical thinking and creativity, for example — can provide a better path to 21st-century success.

Five Fairfax County, Virginia high school juniors conveyed this message during a recent visit to the U.S. Department of Education (ED) headquarters, where they showcased their Advanced Placement Capstone™ project on how well the United States’ modern education system prepares students for post-college success.

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Youth Voice is Key to Spark Effective Change

Last week, nearly 70 students from four states visited the U.S. Department of Education, and inspired ED staff to improve the education system in America to work for all students. These students were anything but diffident, for they came prepared to ask questions, all curious to know what the federal government’s role is in education.

Each group of students shared the uniqueness of their programs and the challenges they face in their schools. These students exhibited determination, optimism, civic engagement and forward thinking. They let us know that their voices are the key to spark effective change.

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