Many local resources can guide teen parents to college, career
In this article, you’ll find answers to questions like:
1. What are options for completing high school?
2. How to get help with college?
3. How to get career help?
But local resources — and knowledgeable experts — can help teens navigate these tough issues and prepare for their family's future.
First, teens should do all they can to continue their education. This will give them more career options in the future and help reduce the financial burden of early parenthood, says resource teacher Amy Crease and case manager Judith McInnes, both of the School District of Palm Beach County’s Department of Safe Schools Teen Parent Program.
School programs specifically for pregnant students and teen parents help identify students' strengths, goals and career paths to ensure their chances of being independent as young parents.
1. WHAT ARE OPTIONS FOR COMPLETING HIGH SCHOOL?
The Teen Parent Program can help Palm Beach County students become responsible parents and complete requirements for graduation. Participants must take at least one parenting skills course while earning credits toward a standard or special diploma. The program provides support services such as child care, health care, social services, parenting education and transportation. Call 561-494-1574 or speak with your school counselor.
- To receive free tutoring: The Literacy Coalition of Palm Beach County's AmeriCorps volunteers offer academic coaching, tutoring and graduation mentoring. Call 561-279-9103.
- To earn an online high school degree and career certification in one of eight categories: Learn more about Career Online High School.
2. HOW TO GET HELP WITH COLLEGE?
The Federal TRIO Programs are designed to identify and provide services for low-income individuals, first-generation college students and individuals with disabilities to help them progress through the academic pipeline, from middle school to post-baccalaureate programs.
Contact Palm Beach State College’s student support services for more information on local TRIO programs that help non-traditional students overcome class, social and cultural barriers to higher education. Call 561-868-3392 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Download your copy of Palm Beach County Teen Help Guide. This resource is updated regularly by 211 HelpLine.
- To create a college road map: Search for tips on the College Board website for studying for and taking the SAT and ACT.
- To become eligible for federal financial aid: Fill out your free application for Federal Student Aid as soon as it becomes available each October.
- To find local scholarships: Visit the School District of Palm Beach County’s database.
- To get help with scholarship applications if you’re in foster care: Visit Best Foot Forward Foundation.
- To get educational help if you’re homeless: Visit The National Center for Homeless Education.
3. HOW TO GET CAREER HELP?
Mandel Public Library of West Palm Beach’s Square One program provides help to unemployed youth who are not in school, ages 15 to 29, including educational counseling, driving simulation, special events, resume workshops and computer skills. Call 561-868-7707 or email email@example.com.
- To gain career skills and certifications: Career Source Palm Beach County's youth services offers teen work placement programs. Call 561-340-1060, ext. 2376.
- To receive vocational skills training: Project Lift 14-week programs for at-risk youth are available in the Glades area.
- To visit a career fair: The annual Palm Beach County College and Career Fair at South Florida Fairgrounds is held each October. Watch for details on the school district’s website.
- To explore careers: Try the MyCareerShines free online tool via the Florida Department of Education website to learn about yourself, make a plan for education and prepare for work. Also check out My Next Move sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor.
• Amy Crease, resource teacher for Teen Parent Program, School District of Palm Beach County’s Department of Safe Schools
• Judith McInnes, case manager for Teen Parent Program, School District of Palm Beach County’s Department of Safe Schools
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Path to College
A nonprofit that helps students reach their academic and personal goals so they can achieve higher SAT scores, enter college and stay out of debt. Programs and services include academic free workshops (including virtual college and SAT prep), mentorship, fellowship and internships.561-907-7679 Website Email
Federal Student Aid
Information and application for federal student financial assistance programs for college or graduate school800-433-3243 Website Email
211 Palm Beach Treasure Coast
Teen hotline, including online chat from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily. Or, texting available 24 hours a day by texting your ZIP code to 898211.2-1-1 Website Email
CareerSource Palm Beach County
Provides job placement, recruitment assistance and money for skills training. Centers in West Palm Beach and Belle Glade offer workshops for job search and career development.1-866-891-7273 Website Email
School District of Palm Beach County
Teen Parent Program — support for pregnant students and teen parents to enable them to graduate, such as referrals to health, social and child care services561-494-1588 Website Email
Palm Beach State College
Based in Lake Worth Beach with other campuses in Belle Glade, Loxahatchee Groves, Palm Beach Gardens and Boca Raton561-967-7222 Website Email