The Illinois PaCE Framework was developed with extensive input gathered from stakeholders and subject matter experts to provide guidance to students, families, and educators on what types of experiences and information a student should have in order to make the most informed decision about college and career planning beginning in 8th grade and through high school. The framework is organized around three key areas:
It’s recognized that high schools and communities provide a broad array of college and career readiness activities for students, but they are not always well documented and/or connected to other initiatives within a school, district, or community. The intent of the PaCE Framework is for it to be an organizing tool to help acknowledge and connect areas of success and identify those that may need additional attention or resources. The PaCE Framework was adopted by the Illinois State Board of Education, Illinois Board of Higher Education, Illinois Community College Board, and the Illinois Student Assistance Commission in July 2016.
Examples of activities schools could incorporate to address the three areas include:College Fair Visits
Mock Job Interviews
Career Interest Surveys
PaCE Student Checklist
PaCE + CCRI + CCPE Crosswalk
PaCE + CCRI + CCPE Frameworks
On PaCE to Thrive (PDF)
PaCE Flyer (PDF)
PaCE Support Request Form (PDF)
PaCE Webinar Recording March 22, 2017
Opportunities for employers to engage in supporting PaCE implementation (and college and career readiness in their communities) (PDF)
PaCE Crosswalk for Social Science and Social Emotional Learning Standards Organized by Grade Level (PDF)
PaCE Crosswalk for Social Science and Social Emotional Learning Standards Organized by Standards (PDF)
The Illinois Student Assistance Commission’s (ISAC) Division of Capacity Development and Training continues to provide support for implementation of the Postsecondary and Career Expectations (PaCE) Framework. ISAC is pleased to announce new dates for the PaCE Overview and PaCE Implementation Leader Training. ISAC will offer these sessions virtually and at no cost to help schools understand and adopt the Illinois PaCE Framework or develop a customized framework to fit their needs.
The training will be held via WebEx and registration is required. Learn more information and register at isac.org/pilt. To learn more about Illinois PaCE and related resources, visit isac.org/pace. For additional questions and inquiries, please contact email@example.com.
The PWR Act establishes a voluntary system for school districts to award college and career pathways endorsements on high school diplomas. The endorsement will demonstrate students’ readiness for college and careers and completion of instruction and professional learning experiences in a selected career interest area, and incentivize career exploration and development, particularly in high-demand career fields. College and career pathway endorsements require an individualized learning plan, career-focused instruction, career exploration activities and 60 hours of internships or similar experiences. State agencies and employers are coordinating to identify minimum career competencies to incorporate into endorsement programs.
CCPE Technical & Employability Competencies
College and Career Pathway Endorsement Framework
State of Illinois Career Pathways Dictionary
Webinar: An Introduction to Technical and Employability Competencies for College and Career Pathway Endorsements
Webinar: Developing Pathways Using Industry-Aligned Competencies
First Ever Students Earn the College and Career Pathway Endorsement at Ridgewood High School
Ridgewood High School, located in the Chicago suburbs, was the first district in Illinois to award the College and Career Pathway Endorsement to Class of 2020 graduates who successfully completed the Human and Public Services and Manufacturing/Engineering pathways. For the ten Class of 2020 graduates who earned the endorsement, the goal of advanced postsecondary success is already a step closer than ever before. For the five manufacturing graduates, all received job offers in manufacturing, which three took while two enrolled in college to major in engineering. Of the five who earned the education pathway endorsement, three are now pursuing education majors in four-year colleges. Despite the current challenges of social distancing, Ridgewood anticipates even more students will earn endorsements to the Class of 2021, across additional pathways. “We want to create a pathway for every student,” says Principal Castellano. “Our end goal is for students to know what they’re passionate about and learn all their skills through project-based learning and outside experiences to meet all our graduation competencies.” Learn more about their efforts here.
Upcoming Expansion of Education and Teacher Pathways
To increase the number of students interested in seeking the teaching profession and enrolling into colleges of education, EdSystems and Teach Plus advocated for the following two items in 2019–2020 with ISBE:
In regards to Early Pathways, EdSystems has supported one cohort of districts who have tied their pathways to the CCPE and will soon be launching a second cohort. ISBE has launched a cohort. Regarding investment of curricular materials and professional learning, Teach Plus is leading the process for the Educators Rising, a national organization, to become a CTE Student Organization Illinois.
For more info, please contact Juan Jose Gonzalez or Heather Penczak.
Updated Model Programs of Study
The Illinois Community College Board (ICCB) sponsored the development of Model Programs of Study Guides in crucial industry areas as part of the Illinois State Plan for Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act (also known as the Perkins V Plan). These Guides were developed in consultation and collaboration with the Illinois State Board of Education through a process led and facilitated by Education Systems Center at NIU (EdSystems). As further detailed in the Guides, the process involved extensive research into labor market information and credential programs, and dialogue across secondary, postsecondary, and employer stakeholders. Drafts of the first four Model Programs of Study Guides were released in June 2020 for the focus areas of Education, Health Sciences and Technology, Information Technology, and Manufacturing and Engineering. Public comment was received through August 2020, and has been incorporated into the final Guides, posted here, which were released in October 2020.
Illinois Work-Based Learning Innovation Network
The first community of practice session for the Illinois Work-based Learning Innovation Network (I-WIN) was held on October 28, 2020, featuring national and regional innovators in virtual work-based learning. You can access the recording and materials at the I-WIN Resource site. If you would like to participate in upcoming communities of practice, please sign up here.
The Postsecondary and Workforce Readiness (PWR) Act includes a set of strategies to support Illinois students in their transition from high school to postsecondary education, workforce training, and careers. A major barrier to postsecondary persistence and completion is remedial education, with students enrolling in remedial courses completing approximately 13% less of their courses compared to non-remedial peers, and having substantially lower outcomes related to graduation rate, advancement rate, and credit accumulation. Many Illinois high school graduates require remedial courses in math, reading and communication courses. The State has established a statewide implementation systems for Transitional Math and has recently released Transitional English draft materials for review developed by a Transitional English Competency Development Group.
The Statewide Panel for Transitional Instruction reviewed and approved a final version of the Transitional English Course Parameters and Competencies to be sent to State agencies for adoption by the end of this year. Designation of a portability panel and development of portability panel documentation requirements will occur after State adoption. For a deeper dive into the background and development process of the Transitional English Course Parameters and Competencies, an informational webinar recording and presentation are available.
The Fall portability panel met on Wednesday, October 28. A meeting summary with decisions, course approval criteria changes, and upcoming meeting dates can be reviewed on the PWR Transitional Math site. The next portability panel meeting will be Wednesday, April 14, 2021. Currently, 30 of the State’s 39 community college systems have at least one transitional math course approved for state portability.
November 2020 launches another round of the 3-day virtual Transitional Math Professional Learning Series offered free of charge for administrators, teachers, and counselors to help them prepare for implementation of Transitional Math and state portability submission. You can visit the PWR Transitional Math site to access webinar materials and curricular resources. For additional information or to request a professional learning experience from ISBE, please e-mail TRInstruction@isbe.net.
How are these courses different from typical math programs?
These transitional courses are one element of a comprehensive strategy to increase college and career readiness. The career-oriented courses are modeled after successful college and career readiness programs in high schools, like McHenry County College. Additionally, transitional math programs will be delivered through local secondary/postsecondary partnership agreements. The partnership agreements ensure that students receive curriculum on par with local colleges and enable students to develop familiarity with local colleges.
In contrast to an education model focused on “seat time” (the amount of time a child spends in a class), a Competency Based Education (CBE) allows students more flexibility to progress as they demonstrate mastery of concepts. The PWR Act establishes a pilot program for voluntary school district participation in moving from “seat time” graduation requirements to competency based high school graduation requirements. The Act includes a streamlined waiver process for pilot districts of laws and regulations that may restrict the competency based system’s implementation. The pilot is limited to 12 school districts per year in the first two years of implementation, and 15 school districts per year after.
Is your team working on remote learning plans for this fall? Have you considered implementing competency-based practices to help your students meet their full potential? Hear from national experts Karin Hess, Rose Colby, and Daniel Joseph in Shifts Happen: Covid-19 “Disruptions” Can Offer New Opportunities for Moving Toward Personalization and Competency-Based Approaches, a pre-recorded webinar presented by EdSystems. Plus, learn best practices from Illinois educators whose competency-based approaches helped students survive and thrive in remote learning this past spring. Watch now.
Competencies focus more on what students know and are able to do rather than courses or seat time. CBE is one strategy under the larger approach of student centered education.
Student centered education tailors the supports to students’ needs based on the skills and the competencies the student has. This method aims to develop learner independence and autonomy by putting more responsibility in the student’s hands. Student centered education requires students to be active, accountable participants in their own learning and with their own pace of learning.
In contrast to an education model focused on “seat time” (the amount of time a child spends in a class) a student centered, competency based approach allows students more flexibility to progress as they demonstrate mastery of concepts. This model better positions schools to provide individualized support to students at multiple levels of academic achievement. Students in CBE classrooms are better engaged because their course material is personalized and relevant to their abilities.
Newsletter recipients will receive periodic updates, resources and more on the Postsecondary & Workforce Readiness Act.