Columbia – At its February 9 meeting, the Education Oversight Committee (EOC) adopted the “Profile of the South Carolina Graduate”, a set of skills and characteristics that are critical for all graduates of high schools in South Carolina. Originally written by a group of South Carolina school district superintendents in 2012, the profile has also been adopted and approved by the South Carolina Association of School Administrators Superintendent’s Roundtable, the South Carolina Chamber of Commerce, and the South Carolina Council on Competitiveness.
Educators that originally developed the profile, along with a group of statewide business leaders organized as “TransformSC” under the SC Council on Competitiveness in 2012. The coalition of business and education leaders continues to grow and has expanded to include students, parents and policymakers.
“The profile of the graduate reminds us all what the end-goal is for students that move on to careers either before or after continuing their education beyond high school,” said David Whittemore, Chairman of the EOC. “Rigorous standards focused on the knowledge that young people need are important but the profile remind us that life and career characteristics like perseverance and self-direction are critical for success as well.”
Whittemore, a businessman from Easley, explained that the concerns of business often point to today’s graduates lacking skills in critical thinking, problem solving, and “soft-skills” like integrity and a strong work ethic.
“Families and communities also have an important role in helping our children develop these life skills.”
The TransformSC initiative created a network of 37 schools that adopted the Profile as a shared mission in 2013. TransformSC schools are voluntarily piloting innovative practices for the delivery and measurement of learning by implementing all, or some combination of the following practices:
- Real-world learning. Project-based learning integrates traditional subjects (math, English/language arts, science, social studies, etc.) in the form of real-world problems for students to solve. Students are engaged in content relevant to them while also learning skills and characteristics like problem solving, critical thinking and teamwork.
- Anytime, anywhere instruction. Blended learning, a hybrid of face-to-face and digital instruction, gives teachers the capability to instruct students anytime, anywhere. Digital content adapts to students where they are in their learning, allowing teachers the flexibility to design instruction for individual students.
- Real-time information. With full integration of technology in the classroom, teachers, parents and students have the ability to continuously assess student progress. Parents no longer have to wait on report cards or parent-teacher conferences to understand how their child is progressing and teachers can use frequent feedback to continually monitor and personalize instruction.
- Students advance when ready. The combination of real-time information and the flexibility of digital content means that students can progress based on competency. If students struggle, they are given more time and support. If students learn quickly, they are allowed to advance. Students in the same classroom may move at different paces based on their level of learning.
About SC Education Oversight Committee
The SC Education Oversight Committee is an independent, non-partisan group made up of 18 educators, business persons, and elected leaders. Created in 1998, the committee is dedicated to reporting facts, measuring change, and promoting progress within South Carolina’s education system.
TransformSC, an education initiative of the SC Council on Competitiveness, is a collaboration of business leaders, educators, students, parents and policy makers transforming the public education system so that every student graduates prepared for careers, college and citizenship. TransformSC schools and districts are designing, launching, promoting and proving transformative practices in the classroom. Currently there are 37 schools and 3 districts in the TransformSC network. For more information, visit https://sccompetes.org/transformsc/.