About the College and Career Readiness Strategic Plan


The Oklahoma State Deparment of Education will ensure each student in Oklahoma has equitable access to a high-quality public education that inspires deep learning and leads to success.

In pursuit of this vision, OSDE will adhere to Oklahoma’s ABCs for excellence: ACHIEVE academic success for each student in Oklahoma, BUILD exceptional educators and schools and CREATE engaged communities.

We will monitor our achievement of this vision by measuring progress on key metrics across the state:

  1. Strengthen early childhood partnerships and measure kindergarten readiness with state-established criteria.

  2. Rank in the top half of states on the NAEP by 2020.

  3. Ensure that the majority of high school graduates from the class of 2020 will earn a postsecondary certificate, diploma or degree.

The OSDE will continue to identify evidence-based practices and provide professional development to support effective implementation for middle school transitions. One strategy to assist students transitioning from middle school to high school is the use of Individual Career Academic Plans (ICAPs). An ICAP is a multi-year process that guides students as they explore career, academic and postsecondary opportunities. ICAPs are intended to be implemented through a schoolwide approach led by school counselors with expertise in career development. Through implementation of ICAPs and other reforms, including state assessments, Oklahoma intends for counselors to refocus their efforts on career and postsecondary exploration and planning for students. Schoolwide implementation, however, should be coordinated among a team of educators allowing for the student, parent and individual teacher to play key roles in selecting a path to success after high school. ICAP implementation in Oklahoma is supported by both the Oklahoma School Counselor Association (an affiliate of the American School Counselor Association) and the Oklahoma Counseling Association.

ICAPs will equip students and families with the awareness, knowledge and skills to create their own meaningful exploration of college and career opportunities. The ICAP is an evolving document that reflects students’ changing passions, aptitudes, interests and growth. When students complete an ICAP, they discover which pathways fit their unique talents and what kind of academic preparation and experiences will prepare them for in-demand careers, some of which may not even exist when they graduate from high school. When students complete a meaningful ICAP process, they:

  • Connect the relevance of education to their future goals;

  • Create secondary and postsecondary course plans to pursue their career and life goals;

  • Strategically select a postsecondary pathway to align with self-defined career, college and life goals;

  • Establish better communication and engagement between school and home; and

  • Understand and demonstrate career exploration and career planning.

While students must begin the ICAP process in ninth grade for graduation purposes, completion of a student’s first ICAP should begin in sixth grade. Oklahoma has set a goal to have all students in grades 6 through 12 complete an ICAP, thereby easing their transition from grade to grade. Other strategies Oklahoma is deploying for middle school transition include: (opportunities for kids, teachers, and business)

  • Southern Regional Education Board (SREB) transition courses for eighth graders in English language arts and mathematics to be prepared for high school (2019-20 school year); Oklahoma’s Promise, a college tuition scholarship for students in grades 8-10 whose families earn $55,000 or less annually and who meet academic and conduct requirements (Oklahoma law will increase the income cap to $60,000 in school year 2021-22);

  • Summer STEM academies, sponsored by the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education, are open to upcoming eighth through 12th graders. Each academy explores the latest trends in math, science and technology by using fun, hands on activities and innovative software as students experiment both in the classroom and outdoors. Many academies also include field trips to some of the state’s top companies, science facilities and museums;

  • The Teacher Summer Externships partners businesses with select teachers who desire to learn more about various careers in order to share this awareness with their students. These paid externships provide embedded application to the classroom and are supported by the OSDE’s STEM team through virtual networking.

  • Family guides in Pre-K through 12th grade will provide strategies for family engagement with their children that highlight the Oklahoma Academic Standards in a convenient, user-friendly format;

  • Lead to Succeed principal training targets middle school learning through promotion of learning organizations and teaming for instructional leadership.

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Last updated on August 27, 2018