EPSO Week a success at HHS

The Tennessee Department of Education designated October 23-27 as Early Postsecondary Opportunity (EPSO) Week, and as part of our effort at Haywood High School, to increase awareness and enrollment in EPSOs we invite students to participate in the activities throughout the week and for parents to attend our EPSO Parent and Family Seminars.

Research shows that students who participate in EPSOs not only earn college credit and industry certification while in high school, but are also more likely to enroll and persist in postsecondary programs. Your student can access a number of these opportunities at HHS including:

  • Dual Enrollment – Academic – College English, U. S. history, sociology, finite math, art appreciation, music appreciation, etc.
  • Dual Enrollment – Career and Technical – Students receive credit at the high school and through TCAT in industrial welding, machining, anatomy and physiology, medical terminology, office management, etc.
  • Industrial Level Certifications – Certified nursing assistant (CNA), Patient Care Technician (PCT), AWS welding, certified production technician (PCT), etc.

In addition, the school will have prominent citizens in the community speaking to the students about careers and technical jobs available in the community and surrounding areas. They will talk about the skills needed for these jobs and careers and the jump they can get on gaining these qualifications by working with the high school to take advantage of opportunities in these areas of training. Speaking were Joe Barden, who owns and manages Barden Construction Company; Rhonda Thompson, a retired teacher and former Director of the HHS Career and Technical Division; Brownsville Mayor Bill Rawls whose background includes leadership and careers in business, and HHS Principal Dr. Jerry Pyron.

On Thursday, the school held a job fair featuring many area businesses, industries, and post secondary schools in the area talking to students about their businesses and areas of opportunities.

On Friday, students had the opportunity to sign up to become a READY GRADUATE. The READY GRADUATE is a building block that allows students to make a course of study seamlessly transfer to enrolling in postsecondary education and entering the workplace or the military.

The READY Graduate Indicator would be calculated as follows: Score a 21 or higher on the ACT; or Complete four early postsecondary opportunities (EPSOs); or Complete two EPSOs, plus earn an industry certification (on a CTE pathway leading to a credential; or Complete two EPSOs, plus score a designated score TBD on the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) Armed Forces Qualifying Test (AFQT).

These indicators define four “checks” for evidence that graduates have demonstrated postsecondary and workforce readiness. This is not a graduation requirement. HHS Career and Technical Director Pam Diebold coordinated this event.