Eight years ago, a program launched in the heartland of America that seemed…how shall I say this…a little crazy! A school board decided to push the boundaries of traditional education: what would solve that age-old challenge in education known as “senioritis?” What would increase engagement while better preparing students not just for college, or even career, but for life?
Enter The Center for Advanced Professional Studies (CAPS), born in the Blue Valley School District in the Kansas City suburb of Overland Park, Kansas. At its beginning in 2009, it had no place to call home, and just over 100 early-adopter students to its name (out of a school district of more than 22,000 students). The crazy idea for these pioneering students? Fast forward them past high school and college – welcome them into a professional environment, treat them like adults and give them an authentic project in which to sink their teeth.