The Putnam County Educational Service Center (PCESC) has partnered with Ohio Department of Education (ODE), local Putnam County School Districts and local businesses to implement a grant funded Work Based Learning (WBL) Program. The schools with support from the PCESC have implemented a career based curriculum called Envision IT developed by The Ohio State University, and being implemented with the goal of touching all students during their 8-12 experience. The curriculum targets the development of skills needed to transition from high school to employment, to post-secondary education, and beyond. The curriculum has been shown to increase technology literacy, reading, and transition skills by assisting with career exploration, goal setting, and employer driven soft skills and much more. Locally all schools are teaching the course work in high school courses taught by general education faculty and in some cases Intervention Specialist.
The WBL program also offers to eligible students a career exploration by visiting post-secondary education sights, job shadowing, volunteerism, and employment. To date, Pandora students have visited Rhodes, UNOH, and have been engaged in Envision IT as well as beginning to connect to work based experiences. Nationally, it is estimated one-half of high school graduates in the United States do not go on to college, and of those who do, less than 25 percent obtain 4-year degrees. Thus emphasizing the need for career exploration like WBL and Envision IT.