Nearly 52 percent of community college students in the United States begin their freshman year in at least one remedial class. These courses, which help students acquire knowledge and skills they should have acquired in high school, do not count toward their degree requirements. As a result, students are taking longer (meaning more money) than ever to obtain their degree, if they obtain one at all.
Is your child ready?
The term college-ready is generally applied to (1) students who are considered to be equipped with the knowledge and skills deemed essential for success in university, college, and community-college programs, or (2) the kinds of educational programs and learning opportunities that lead to improved preparation for these two- and four-year collegiate programs. The college-ready concept is also related to career-ready, equity, high expectations, and rigor. Making sure your child is ready is a combination of academic and social readiness. Many high school students enter college campuses unable to adapt to the challenges and freedoms that college campuses afford. To make sure your child is ready, set them on a schedule or talk to them about time management. In my experience, many of those who do not return or end up on academic probation, are not suffering from lack of academic skill. They are falling victim of social parties, lack of time management, and just the pure shock of THAT NEW FREEDOM!
How Can you help?
The first thing you can do to help is not procrastinate. Look, I know life is busy, but high school will go by in a blur. Have you visited any schools? Have you started having conversations about a career path? Have you started investing in closing academic gaps? And yes, I mean investing. A student who attended our program recently received additional scholarship money ($8,000) because of his improved academics.
Let your child fail
A very important thing you can do is allow for small opportunities for your child to fail. Fail? Yes fail. When done with purpose, they allow for valuable life lessons we as adults know all too well. Many parents worry too much about the emotional-disappointments of the child. But if you protect a child from everything, you come to find out, you are protecting them from nothing. Disappointment, learning sacrifice, and self-denial for the sake of others, is just as much a social-emotional skill as sharing. If your child doesn’t learn how to cope with disappointment, how will they learn perseverance?
It’s never too early to start talking to your child about college and career readiness. It’s never too early for you to start investing in specialized instruction outside of school. Don’t wait until even Junior year to start looking into ACT preparation. Not all programs are the same, so do your research and choose what works best for you. Some students do well with online courses, while others benefit from a more personal approach. Comment below and let us know how we can help.