It’s often difficult to quantify learning. Grading practices, standardized testing, and other such metrics are perennially hot topics of debate amongst educators. Certifications are a great way to give students a practical, tangible, measurable way to demonstrate their learning and skills. At KidsTek, we offer our students a variety of certifications from computer science to business ethics.
As we approach the end of the fall semester, students at Aurora’s Hinkley High School are wrapping up their Intro to Computer Science course before they move on to Intro to Programming in the spring. This year, we are also teaching Intro to Computer Science at Denver’s Florence Crittenton High School, adapted to fit a trimester model and run for a full school year. Students who achieve a high enough class grade in Intro to Computer Science have the opportunity to pursue the IC3 Digital Literacy certification. To earn this, students must pass three tests covering the three content areas of the class. So far, we’ve had quite a few students pass the first exam who are now studying for the second.
Our other currently offered certification for high school students is the LIFT Business Ethics certification developed by the Denver/Boulder Better Business Bureau Foundation. This curriculum helps students think critically about ethical decision-making and is a great résumé item from a well-known and respected organization. This certification is offered as part of KidsTek’s Business Computing class at North High School, and this year eight North students earned the certification by completing a case study analysis project and presentation.
In addition to our high school certifications, KidsTek also offers adult classes for the A+ certification from CompTIA. The A+ is the industry standard for entry-level IT jobs and a great place to start for those embarking on a career in tech. Though we only recently started offering this class, we’ve already seen great success from our students, with five students passing this rather challenging cert so far. We will be offering another session of A+ classes in the new year, so keep tuned for further information if you’re interested in this certification!