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Helping Your Child Plan for What’s Next - Details about the Individual Career & Academic Plan (ICAP)

Image of student's ICAP

One of the most exciting parts of transitioning out of elementary school for students is the opportunity to customize their learning experience by taking classes they are the most interested in. As exciting as it is to have this freedom, it can also be difficult because of the variety of options in LSR7. As a parent, how do you begin to help your child make course selections and ensure that their middle and high school course plan leads them to a solid post-secondary plan? One support to assist parents is the Individual Career and Academic Plan (ICAP). 

Think of the ICAP as your child’s roadmap to success. It is your child’s plan to connect their coursework to their plans after graduation. It also involves your child exploring their talents and interests, post-secondary education options, and career opportunities. While not required in the state of Missouri, the ICAP is part of the Missouri School Improvement Program which is the state accountability system for school districts. 

Your child will begin their ICAP in middle school. During those middle school years, your child is learning about themselves through the career education curriculum. They’ll take career interest inventories, the YouScience aptitude assessment, and explore elective classes to discover what they are passionate about. As your child begins planning for high school, the goal is to help them plan a high school course sequence that prepares them for whatever they want to do after graduation. 

Each student’s ICAP will look different. For example, multiple students may have the same career goals after graduation but choose different routes to get there. The purpose of the ICAP is to help students begin thinking about their future and help them create an actionable plan to make it a reality. 

As we approach the time for course enrollment for the 2023-2024 school year, ask your child some questions to see what they are thinking about when it comes to their plans after graduation. Here are some conversation starters:

  • What have you learned about yourself through the courses you have taken this school year?

  • What are careers you may be interested in after graduation? Are there any courses you can enroll in for next school year to explore that interest further?

  • Talk to me about your course plan for high school and how it helps you accomplish your goals for life after high school. 


-Kimberly Sterne, Career Navigator for the LSHS Feeder Schools