Frequently Asked Questions:
What is Pathways?
The Medford School District Pathways Program allows all students to connect with and engage in the high school experience by choosing four courses in an area of their interest. Students pursue an area of concentration in a pathway of their choice by taking classes they enjoy and becoming involved in a related a club or co-curricular activity. Job shadowing or career internships are encouraged as part of the required Senior Capstone experience.
What type of Pathways are offered at the Medford School District?
Academic, Visual and Performing Arts, and Career and Technical Education(CTE)/STEM.
Why should a student be in a Pathway?
Pathways provide opportunities for students to explore potential career paths, and to pursue a credentialed diploma by earning college credit and/or industry certification while still in high school.
When should my student select a Pathway?
Students may select a Pathway at the end of their 8th grade year, but no later than the end of their freshmen year.
Can my student switch their Pathway?
Yes. A student can switch their Pathway during their high school career, if they decide that another Pathway is more suitable to their interests.
Does a student need more credits to be in Pathways?
No. All students will still be required to complete 24 credits to graduate and become involved with other like-minded students, surrounded by caring adults and with co-curricular activities in which to participate.
Does a student's Pathway dictate their future?
No. A Pathway is simply letting a student explore an area of interest.
Is a Pathway required for a student graduate?
No, but the Medford School District believes that by choosing a pathway, students will be much more engaged in their entire high school experience, better prepared for their futures and more likely to graduate with an understanding of their knowledge, skills and abilities.
Can students still take AP classes while in CTE?
Yes, the student schedule allows seven courses per term. There is room in the schedule to meet all core content requirements as well as to engage in multiple electives. Students may choose to engage fully in CTE while take advantage of accelerated courses and/or purse other elective interests.
Can the students earn college credit or an industry certification while taking CTE classes?
Yes. It is the district's desire that students who participate in the Pathway Program have access to dual college credit by taking advanced placement courses, or post-secondary courses either on MSD campuses or college campuses. When appropriate, CTE courses to be aligned with earning industry certifications.
Is it required that students work in these industries while in high school?
No, students may continue to participate in a normal school day and activities; however, they may choose to begin work in these industries while in high school as part of a cooperative education program.
Have you thought about collaborating with local trade organizations and/or community colleges?
Yes, district leaders are engaged in conversations with local and state, skills trades organizations and community colleges.
Why does the district want to expand into the construction trades (e.g., carpentry, plumbing, electrical, HVAC)?
After analyzing the current programs in the MSD, district administrators in partnership with staff and community members determined the appropriate next set of CTE offerings should be in the construction trades. These trades are highly desired in the Southern Oregon workforce and will allow students to earn competitive wages.
Does this mean a student has to choose a career while in high school?
No. A Pathway is simply letting a student explore an area of interest. A student can also switch their Pathway during their high school career if they decide that another Pathway is more suitable to their interests.
How does expanding CTE and career pathways address dual credit acquisition?
The district has partnered and will continue to partner with Rogue Community College (RCC) and other community colleges in Oregon to articulate their CTE programs, so that students will earn credit towards an AA degree or other post-secondary certification. Current district partnerships with RCC to provide student access to Advanced Manufacturing and other courses of study will continue. Further, the District has proposed allowing RCC to utilize the Tech facilities during non-school hours for adult education opportunities.
Is the District cutting programs to make way for these new programs?
No. The district is seeking to expand student access to career and technical programs and career pathways.