The early blossoms brightening the campuses of our schools indicate the transition from winter to spring is near. As a parent of a junior in high school, I am keenly aware of the swiftness of time. While my son is eager to establish his independence, I am not quite ready to refrain from periodic checks on his academic progress or asking him if he’s inquired about summer work and volunteer experiences. Just as we as parents look for opportunities to support our children as they transition from one stage of adolescent life to the next, we do the same for our students. Last month Milpitas High School welcomed all 738 of our Rancho and Russell eighth grade students to the first annual Middle School Transition Day at MHS. Each middle school student’s introduction to life as a Milpitas Trojan included a convening in the gym to learn about opportunities for learning, leading, and developing personal interests through club and academic experiences. The gathering was followed by a shadowing experience with a MHS student buddy for the morning.
Future Rancho and Russell middle school students have opportunities to hear about the camaraderie that is developed through learning in an interdisciplinary team with 160-170 peers who all share the same core teachers for the year. Sixth grade students will have the opportunity to spend time on their future middle school campuses for part of the day this spring either in groups or as 6th grade class representatives. Within the first week of school 7th grade students will enjoy team building activities through their interdisciplinary teams at Rancho and WEB (Where Everybody Belongs) Day at Russell. PTA and Parent Institute for Quality Education (PIQE) representatives will welcome future Russell and Rancho parents along with their principals this spring.
Transitions into life after high school are essential, and at Cal Hills and MHS students have the opportunity to explore and learn about career options through classes at the Milpitas SJCC Extension and Silicon Valley Career Tech Education. Counselors and advisors work with students to support them in applications for college and financial aid. At Cal Hills students learn communication and job readiness skills in their English IV classes. Students have the opportunity to learn about careers through mentors, career day, and guest engineers.
As we strive to meet our 2018-21 Strategic Plan Goals we are developing more learning pathways and developmental support systems to ignite our students’ passion towards finding their future careers. Learning and growing are constant, and as a community, WE will provide our children with the guidance they need to flourish in MUSD.