Award of Distinction Detail:
Title: Employability Skills Workbook and Portfolio System
School: Vermilion Vocational Education Delivery System
15009 Catlin/Tilton Road
Danville, IL 61834
Abstract: A new curriculum designed to teach employability skills was developed for use with all vocational students in the Vermilion Vocational Education Delivery System (VVEDS) during the 1997-1998 school year. The VVEDS Tech Prep Committee members worked throughout the school year to identify or develop the best employability skills materials available and then compiled a workbook that each vocational student will complete. The curriculum is individualized but may be completed through group instructional activities.

The curriculum provides students with opportunities to identify employment opportunities, apply employment-seeking skills, interpret employment capabilities, demonstrate appropriate work behavior, maintain a safe and healthy environment, maintain working relationships with others, communicate on the job, and adapt to career changes. The curriculum includes locally developed media and instructional materials, as well as commercially made career resources like the Vocational Biographies, the Enter Here Series, CORD Applied Mathematics, CORD Applied Communications and the McDonald's Consumer Services Management Curriculum.

Students are assessed on their ability to perform all of the curriculum activities and must complete a career portfolio. The portfolio is included in an effort to provide vocational students with a process to prepare them for transition from school-to-work and/or to post-secondary education.

The portfolio also provides future employers and admissions officers with a concise, accurate assessment of the student. It may well serve as the first impression left with a future employer, college or other postsecondary educational institution. Portfolio components include student demographic data, a resume, a list of school achievements, an employment history and samples of work completed. Each senior student leaves with a completed portfolio package.