I am proud to say that Volusia County Schools has a solid support system to help our students succeed academically and boost future success. We have events that inform parents of the different programs available for students, such as the School Choice Fair, Career and Technology Education (CTE), and High School Showcase. We highlight the benefits of the programs based on actual data. We also have other support systems to address all students’ mental and emotional needs.

Why is this important? It’s important because we can’t judge a child’s success solely on grades. We need to look at the whole child and ensure that socially and emotionally, they’re doing well too. Today’s students deal with issues that we, as parents, perhaps didn’t encounter. That is why we always encourage parents to seek the assistance of our certified counselors and therapists when faced with challenges they can’t resolve on their own. These professionals can offer resources and strategies to help students better navigate their world.

I also encourage parents to help their child discover their interests. I ask parents what does your child enjoy? What is something they excel in doing? One parent, without a moment’s thought, told me “arguing.” After laughing, I replied, “well, maybe he can join the debate team at school!” As parents, of course, we want what is best for our children, but sometimes we need to be creative and think out of the box to find ways to help our child be genuinely successful. Think of sports, clubs, and specific academic programs that may challenge your child and allow them to discover talents they didn’t know they had.

Volusia County Schools will feature Career and Technology Education (CTE) in February, where ten of our high schools will highlight their academies and various programs. CTE focuses on different career clusters such as finance, engineering, technology, and healthcare, including trades such as HVAC. Some careers don’t require students to take the traditional college path. Some well-paying jobs only require certifications or an associate’s degree, especially in IT. I encourage all families to meet with their child’s counselor and see what programs and resources are available to help their child succeed academically.

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