Do you have a teen who spends time tinkering with motherboards or talking your ear off about the latest malware threat that's plaguing the nation? Chances are, a typical high school curriculum may not be enough to keep a student like yours focused and interested.
K12's Destinations Career Academy is a career readiness online high school made for students with an interest in IT. With our career-focused electives and real-world learning experiences—blended with your student's core studies—you'll see them setting their own pace and balancing extracurricular activities, social life, and family in ways you may have never thought possible.
For students at Destinations, days look different than you might expect. Here's what a day might look like for a student in our IT career pathway.
8:30 AM - Core Classes
Your student may roll out of bed after a long night of dreaming about the next level on their video game or the perfect code sequence for their new project. They'll then log on to their computer and kick off their day at Destinations with core classes. Your student will spend the morning learning math, science, and Spanish to prepare them for their high school diploma and build the foundation for IT classes. For example, geometry will connect with their digital design courses, while math might help them understand the binary code sequences needed for programming.
Our Destinations instructors provide a personalized learning experience to your student in live, teacher-led sessions called Class Connects. Through class sessions, students connect with their peers and teachers in a video conferencing environment. Additionally, our teachers often host distraction-free office hours tailored to your student's needs. Students can collaborate on a project with all the support and resources of a traditional classroom, but they won't be rushing from one class or one activity to the next. This allows students to master the fundamentals before moving on to career electives that drive their interests and passions.
11 AM - IT Electives
There will be no mid-morning slump for your student at Destinations. Once students finish morning core classes, it's time to dive into IT-focused electives. This may mean coding alongside a teacher who used to write code for a living before becoming a teacher or collaborating on building a network with classmates and making it secure.
Any student interested in an IT Pathway will start with the IT Career Explorations course. Students spend the semester completing projects that expose them to several IT pathways and specialties in the explorations course. This helps students discover their strengths and passions within the IT career field. After completing this course, students can commit to a specific IT Pathway to curate the right electives for their career goals. Each pathways course builds upon the last and sets your student up for success. With this hands-on experience, students can begin to define what a future career could look like.
1 PM - Work-Based Learning
Destinations students rarely ask, "when am I ever going to use this?" Instead, students put their lessons to practice through work-based learning. Relying on platforms like Nepris, students can connect with real-world professionals in the IT field and gain meaningful insights about their day-to-day life.
For students itching for IT real-world work, they can use Tallo to connect with both colleges and companies for potential internships, apprenticeships, jobs, or scholarships. Students build an online resume that showcases their value in the IT field beyond grades and academic performance. IT students can upload coding projects they've completed or showcase websites they've built to give employers and schools a better idea of their level of expertise.
The real-world exposure provided to your student through Nepris and Tallo aims to give students opportunities they might have missed out on otherwise. Setting students up with industry experts helps them to visualize the future they want.
3 PM - Independent Learning
The life of a teen wouldn't be complete without homework. But as they say, if you love your job, it doesn't feel like work. In selecting a pathways program, students choose the kinds of projects and homework they'll spend their days completing. Through these projects, students work independently, as they would on a real IT job. They'll learn time management and navigating resources to complete a task.
But no student is an island. That's where Learning Coaches come in. A Learning Coach is an adult in a student's life designated to help them stay on track in school. Ranging from parents and guardians to trusted tutors, a Learning Coach helps their student understand assignments, navigate resources and materials, and they advocate for the student's success.
6 PM - Passion Projects
As students wrap up their day, they'll have plenty of time to pursue their passions. IT students are encouraged to play with what they've learned from managing their own website to coding their own video games.
From career-focused clubs to nationally recognized business clubs, Destinations students will have the chance to connect with others who share interests within the IT field and have similar career ambitions. They'll work on projects, take field trips, and compete against other schools.
In addition to clubs, students are encouraged to work on their passion projects. For students in the IT pathway, this often consists of graphic design projects, tinkering with network configurations on their computer, or diving into coding challenges to learn diverse programming languages. At Destinations, students can pursue their passions knowing that the subjects they are studying in their coursework, as well as work-based learning experiences, will help them gain a clearer picture of what their life will be like after high school.
*Opportunities vary by school; please visit your school page or check with your school counselor.