After eight years, Idaho has made only limited progress toward an ambitious goal to convince high school graduates to continue their education. What will it take to change the trends — and change the lives of young Idahoans? Idaho Education News reporter Kevin Richert spent five months talking to students, teachers and policymakers about the state’s “60 percent” goal, and the demographic realities that stand in the way.
Idaho’s “60 percent goal” defines a target, while trivializing the challenge. In trying to convince high school graduates to stay in school, Idaho is seeking to create new family histories and establish new community beliefs.
Mini-Cassia students can work under a unique apprenticeship program that promises high school credits, summer work — and a permanent job after graduation. Partners say the formula could work for other communities and industries.
In rural communities, career-technical education is often seen as a complement, or a counterweight, to the push to college. But schools often struggle to find qualified CTE teachers, or provide a full slate of course offerings.