Parent Resources

College and Career Readiness Activities (Including IPS)

USD 240 uses Career Cruising to facilitate the state-required Individual Plan of Study (IPS). This is one of the requirements for accreditation in the state of Kansas and is important to allow students and parents to see and help shape the future in a positive manner to be successful adults. The IPS itself is a process through which students in our district go through several activities in Career Cruising, including the development of a 6-year plan (2 years post-high school) through which they explore aptitudes, options, and strategies geared towards their future.

Below is the list of activities you should expect your student do be doing in the process. Also the table directly below that tells you at what grade level that activity should be happen. 

Career Cruiser and related activity definitions

  • Ability profile - A timed assessment of work aptitude abilities. This is completed in grade 11.

  • Career and life goals activity - Students identify short and long-term goals. This activity is completed in grade 10.

  • Career planning activity - Activities like completing a resume or attending a job fair are listed for students to check-off on. This activity is completed in grade 10 and grade 11.

  • Career selector - Allows students to search for careers based on criteria such as earnings, working conditions, and core tasks. This completed in grade 8 and grade 9.

  • Create a post-secondary plan - Intended to help students bring together all of their career exploration activities into a concrete plan for after high school. This is completed in grade 12.

  • Do the financial aid selector - Searches for available financial aid and scholarships based on students' information. This is completed in grades 10, 11 and 12.

  • Learning styles assessment - Identify "How They Learn". This assessment is completed in grade 7 and grade 9.

  • List extracurriculars (for resume) - List of all school activities participated in (BB, FB, etc). This is completed in grades 8, 9 and 12.

  • List hobbies and interests - List of all activities outside of school (4-H, etc). This is completed in grade 7.

  • Matchmaker - Interest survey to match potential careers with self-identified student interests. This is addressed in grades 7, 8, 9, 10, 11 and 12.

  • Resume - Self Explanatory. This activity is addressed in grades 7, 8 , 9, 10, 11 and 12.

  • Review 4-yr plan - IPS. This plan is completed in grades 9, 10 and 11.

  • Save career clusters - Students select potential career clusters based on matchmaker results. This activity is completed in grades 8, 9, 10 and 11.

  • Save schools to profile - Once clusters are identified, students research schools offering degrees/studies in those needed areas. This is addressed in grades 10, 11 and 12.

  • Saved career - See "Clusters". These are completed in grades 7, 8, 9, 10, 11 and 12.

  • Skills and abilities activity - Students in the selected grades will be required to enter their skills and abilities in their Portfolio. Students may enter information about their personal attributes, computer skills, language skills, or other abilities. This activity is completed in grade 10.

  • Work skills assessment -Students in the selected grades will be required to complete the My Skills component of Career Matchmaker, which asks users to rate their skills in 45 areas and compares their responses to the skill requirements of each career, and save their results to their Portfolio. This is completed in grade 10.

In addition, we take students to various off-campus venues that include 4-year, junior college, and vocational post-secondary institutions. Below is a list of the planned activities we work very hard to do each year (some of these MAY change due to capacity). 

Off-Campus Activities:

The district is working hard to engage kids in thinking about their future as it relates to post-secondary education, career opportunities, and where to look for more information. One of the things that we have done the past three years is ensure we get every student in grades 7-11 on various campuses to explore those opportunities. What follows below is what is planned for the 2022-2023 school year.

Grade 7: This group of students will go to Salina Polytechnic, Salina Area Vo-Tech, and Kansas Wesleyan in the spring. This gives them a pretty good sample of three levels of post-secondary opportunities.

Grade 8: This group has gone to the North Central Kansas Technical College in Beloit. This year, we are doing something different as there is a Middle School Careers Day in Hutchinson. Our 8th grade students will rotate through learning by doing job stations separated by the seven career fields as defined in the Kansas Career Clusters Model.

Grade 9: Students will be going to Fort Hays State University. This is more of a leadership conference that students seemed to really benefit from the past two years. 

Grade 10: This will be a campus tour of a Regents university and will include financial aid information for students. We try to rotate this around to the area universities, especially Wichita State and Fort Hays State as they seemed to have done a much better job of relaying post-secondary life for students.

Grade 11: We take students to the ESSDACK Career Expo in Hutchinson. This event has features dozens of two and four-year colleges, university, and technical schools with booths, demonstrations, and information about what they have to offer students. It also contains many other career informational avenues for students, including apprenticeship and similar opportunities for students to consider. There are hundreds and hundreds of students from across the state participating in this event.


Grade 12: For this group of students, counselors focus more on those that are undecided in relation to post-secondary endeavors. They look to find opportunities for them to explore campuses, vocational schools, etc. that fit into their Individual Plan of Study. These are handled on an individual or small group basis.

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