Today (August 20), the Evansville Vanderburgh School Corporation, in collaboration with the OptIN Advisory Council and the City of Evansville, officially unveiled the Mayor’s Work Ethic Certificate. The Mayor’s Work Ethic Certificate is a college and career readiness opportunity for eighth grades students to identify, develop and demonstrate the skills necessary to be successful in high school and beyond. Currently, students at six EVSC schools will have the opportunity to earn the certificate.
“By earning the Mayor’s Work Ethic Certificate, our students are demonstrating they have a strong work ethic and are saying they are committed to learning and mastering the skills necessary to be successful as they go on to high school and begin planning their future in earnest,” said EVSC Superintendent David Smith. “The Mayor’s Work Ethic Certificate gives us the opportunity to formally recognize these students for possessing the skills that industry tells us are important at every level, for every single employee.”
The EVSC’s Mayor’s Work Ethic Certificate is a product of EVSC’s OptIN, a program that helps students and parents identify all of the opportunities available to them upon high school graduation. OptIN officials announced the creation of the Governor’s Work Ethic Certificate (GWEC) in August 2018. The Governor’s Work Ethic Certificate is available for high school seniors.
“Because of the success we saw with the Governor’s Work Ethic Certificate, we wanted to take those skills and customize them for our eighth graders,” said B. J. Watts, OptIN executive director. “Just like the GWEC, the Mayor’s Work Ethic Certificate outlines the top transferable skills we know students need in order to be successful as they move forward, regardless of where their path may take them.”
According to Watts, the Mayor’s Work Ethic Certificate mirrors the six skills – called P.R.I.D.E.S. – that are outlined in the Governor’s Work Ethic Certificate. The EVSC’s Work Ethic Certificate requires student mastery of the P.R.I.D.E.S., plus four academic components. The P.R.I.D.E.S include:
Persistence: Students will be resilient, persevere through challenges and problem solve.
Responsibility: Students will accept and demonstrate service to others, possess a positive attitude and communicate effectively and appropriately
Initiative: Students will demonstrate ability to self-start and think creatively and critically. Students will be involved and take ownership of their work.
Dependability: Students will show reliability and accountability, demonstrating responsibility and consistent punctuality.
Ethics: Students will be trustworthy and demonstrate humility, integrity, and independence in their actions.
Self-Management: Students will be flexible, work collaboratively with others, and manage emotions.
The four academic components for the Mayor’s Work Ethic Certificate include:
98% or higher attendance rate
Four hours of community service
No more than one “F”
No AEA (in-school suspension), OSS (out-of-school suspension) or referral to EVSC’s CARES program
“As an EVSC graduate and member of the OptIN advisory council, it is personally inspiring to be actively involved in increasing opportunities for students,” said Evansville Mayor Lloyd Winnecke. “This certificate portrays to those considering investing in our community that students from the EVSC possess the transferable skills necessary for sustained success regardless of when they enter the workforce.”
Rewards will be given to students each quarter who remain eligible for the Mayor’s Work Ethic Certificate. At the end of the school year, all students who successfully earn the certificate will receive a summer pool pass from Mayor Lloyd Winnecke.
“We are excited to see this come together and are extremely thankful for the close partnership and working relationship we have had with Mayor Winnecke who has been extremely supportive of this program,” Watts said. “We definitely could not have done this work without his leadership and support.”
The EVSC will pilot the Mayor’s Work Ethic Certificate at six schools – McGary, Thompkins, Washington, Lincoln, North Jr., and Lodge.