Educating the Workforce of Tomorrow Fall 2017 | Page 10

Work-Based Learning – Empowering Low-Income Students In Hamilton County The Chattanooga Public Education Foundation, in partnership with the Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce, the Benwood Foundation, and the Hamilton County school district launched a work-based learning program to address a stark disconnect between the labor supply and needs of local employers. STEP-UP Chattanooga connects low- income students with businesses, nonprofits, and government agencies that provide internship opportunities for career exploration and training. Modeled on the STEP-UP Achieve program in Minneapolis, Minnesota, STEP-UP Chattanooga helped 76 students attain internships at 43 top Chattanooga companies in 2016. Compensated for their work, these students gain on-the-job experience and professional skill building, and meet professionals who support their career and postsecondary goals. Early Remediation – Proactive Student Supports Through a set of key interventions, Tennessee is taking a proactive and innovative approach to ensure students are prepared for the rigors of postsecondary coursework. Developed in 2012 through a partnership between K-12 and postsecondary educators in Chattanooga, the Seamless Alignment and Integrated Learning Support (SAILS) system reduces college-level remediation in math and English. Using a blended-learning format of both online and face-to-face instruction, SAILS helps students who have not yet reached postsecondary readiness benchmarks on the ACT by providing targeted learning supports in the high school senior year. In 2013, the SAILS Math program launched statewide and since has shown enormous growth in both scale and impact with more than 240 schools and 13,000 students participating in 2016. [21] Student completion rates of SAILS math are above 90 percent, and the number of first-year college students needing math remediation has shrunk by 15.6 percent over the same period of the program’s growth. In the 2015-16 school year, the SAILS English program launched as a pilot program involving 104 students at five high schools, with 98 percent of students completing the program. In 2016-17, the pilot program expanded to 424 students at nineteen high schools. EDUCATING THE WORKFORCE OF TOMORROW 9 Postsecondary And Career Readiness In Tennessee