A Utah school district has launched new programs aimed at preparing children for college, the Utah Times reports.
The programs are part of the state’s $25 million initiative to “educate youth in their 21st century learning environment” and include high school and college.
The schools aim to help prepare students for the workforce, but they’re also offering “professional development” classes that focus on mentoring and developing a network of peers, according to the paper.
The Utah Education Association estimates that about a million students attend public schools in Utah, which is home to about 3 million people.
The state is the third-most populous in the country, behind only California and New York, and has a population of more than 28 million.
The newspaper reported that the new programs will help prepare young people to enter a job market that’s growing at double the rate of Utahns.
“The idea is to be able to provide people with the tools they need to be successful in this economy,” Superintendent Mike Stowe said.
“That’s a goal that’s been important for us.”
The goal is to give students an edge in the job market and also help them develop the skills to be in the workforce when they graduate from high school, the paper reported.
The initiatives also will offer the school district an opportunity to hire more staff.
The program launched this spring, and it is expected to expand throughout the next two years, the newspaper reported.