Beginning in 2020, Chicago students will be required to submit postsecondary plans to their high schools in order to graduate. It’s all in an effort by Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s administration to ensure that the city’s graduating high school students have in place a course of action of what they intend to follow after their high school days are over — be it college, a job, an apprenticeship, or service in the military.
As reports Mary Stegmeir on the “Admitted” blog of the National Association for College Admissions Counseling, an organization to which Ivy Coach is a member, “The new requirement generated a mixed reaction among students, parents, and teachers in the nation’s third-largest school system where an estimated 40 percent of students lack postsecondary plans upon graduation. According to media reports, some praised the policy as an important step in ensuring all students leave high school prepared to succeed. Others questioned how school counselors and other educators would meet the demands of the policy.”
While the announcement of the policy that will take effect in a few years has been met with some criticism, we back it. Not every graduating high school student should go to college. College isn’t for everyone. But it’s important that high schools work with students to ensure they have a plan in place after they’re no longer required to go to school for several hours each day. It seems even more important — and practical — to us than, say, studying Shakespeare for the young people of Chicago. Hopefully other cities across America will soon adopt similar policies, requiring students to submit postsecondary plans in order to graduate.