There are Many Paths

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July 10, 2024

By Jeff Simmons, IDLA Superintendent

Idaho Digital Learning Alliance (IDLA) was created in 2002 to provide “…choice, accessibility, flexibility, quality and equity in curricular offerings for students in this state.” As part of our mission, IDLA is proud to provide all students across Idaho with multiple pathways to their chosen college and career. Also included in our program are numerous opportunities for students to help determine their career goals and how they can get there from where they are now.

IDLA firmly believes that each student is not the same. Each student has unique talents, strengths, capabilities, and interests. IDLA also firmly believes that each student can reach their goal, no matter how high. To help our students meet their individual and unique goals, IDLA offers multiple programs that lead students to their chosen college program or career.

Students across Idaho can leverage the Advanced Opportunities program to complete dual credit courses through IDLA. In dual credit courses, students simultaneously earn high school and college credit. IDLA offers core classes that all college-bound students need, such as English 101 and History 111. IDLA also offers program-specific courses for students who have identified their intended college major through course pathways. For example, students with a goal of working in education can take advantage of IDLA’s Dual Credit Education pathway, featuring four dual credit courses offered in partnership with Idaho State University. Students like Josie Lisle from Rimrock High School have been able to use IDLA’s dual credit program to get a jump start on their college journey.

IDLA also recognizes that only some students have a goal to attend college. Preparing students for the trades and other careers that do not require a four-year degree is just as essential. We have worked hard to create pathways for students pursuing a technical certificate. Students using the Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) pathway can complete a four-course sequence, including one course focusing on completing required clinical skills and hours, to prepare for the CNA exam. Students leveraging programs such as this can finish high school with the opportunity to move straight into the workforce or continue their journey toward a higher-level technical certificate.

There are many other opportunities for students in Idaho, as well. IDLA is exploring options that allow students to earn a certificate by completing a registered apprenticeship program. A registered apprenticeship program will enable students to acquire the necessary certification they need to work in their desired career field while also providing them with paid experience in the field.

At IDLA, we value each student as a unique individual, perfect in their own way. Our commitment to each student is to meet them where they are and help them navigate their path to their desired future. This commitment includes a promise to provide access to all opportunities that lead students to their chosen college and career, regardless of their starting point. We take this promise seriously and will continue to work tirelessly to ensure all students can find their chosen path right where they are today.

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