Houston High School uses a school day in innovative attempt to connect students to their future colleges and careers

Germantown, Tennessee—October 23, 2018—Sometimes the best ideas are born out of chance. For Houston High Assistant Principal Rob Legault, the creation of Future Ready Day came about through necessity.  “The seniors needed to complete the ACT retake during the day, which was going to interrupt class schedules for the entire school,” said Legault, who saw the problem as an opportunity.

 
 
The juniors were scheduled to take a practice ACT during the retake, but both sophomores and freshmen were in need of an activity.  “During a brainstorming session, the school counselors and admin team came up with this idea that we could use the time to do something really meaningful for all of the students,” said Legault.

The school brought back the ASVAB career inventory test and administered it to sophomores.  “The ASVAB may reveal some career paths or interest areas for the students that they have not yet considered or discovered,” he said.  The school counselors took control of the freshmen classes.  

College Counselor Sara Schmitt used the opportunity to teach a session on the Naviance platform.  “It is a really amazing program,” said Schmitt.  She detailed all of its features, including ACT prep, backwards planning for college admissions, and a career inventory.  “The program does so many things and we wanted our students to start taking advantage of it right away,” she said.  Schmitt also invited a guest speaker from the University of Memphis’ Admissions Department to impart advice specifically for freshmen.  “The student feedback was very positive—many of them saying that they really learned some things to consider as they begin their high school careers,” said Legault. 

Freshmen were also treated to a bullying prevention seminar complete with community-led team building games.  The morning was a huge success.  The school is now looking at making the Future Day into a regular school tradition and will repeat the efforts in April when the next test day occurs.  “I think that addressing the students as whole children and giving them time to build relationships with their homeroom classes will pay off as they continue at the school,” said Legault.
  
 
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