Counselor's Corner

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Recent legislation, section 167.902 RSMo, requires that the department of economic development shall annually identify occupations in which a critical need or shortage of trained personnel exists in the labor markets in this state and provide such information to the state board of education. Upon receipt of such data, the state board of education shall, in collaboration with the department of economic development, compile the following data and information:

High-Demand Occupations for FY2025

The educational materials and data derived from the state board of education's collaboration with the department of economic development under subsection 1 of this section shall be distributed by the board to each high school in this state for the purpose of emphasizing areas of critical workforce needs and shortages in the labor markets in this state to high school students to support such students' career pathway decisions. Each high school shall provide its students with the information provided to the school by the state board of education before November first of every school year. 

Each year the Department of Workforce Development provides DESE with a list of high-demand occupations that require more than a high school diploma and less than a bachelor’s degree. Many of these programs are provided at local high schools and area career centers as well as at the community college level. High Demand Occupations for individuals with at least a high school education and less than a bachelor’s degree.  

1. Information on how to obtain industry-recognized certificates and credentials

Career centers across the state provide training on a variety of occupations, including those occupations in which a critical need or shortage of trained personnel exists in the labor market of Missouri.  Training in most of these occupations results in industry-recognized credentials and certificates that are valued by employers.  The map found at this link has connections to each career center.  Individuals and schools are encouraged to contact their local career center to determine what occupational training is available and to get information on licensing requirements.  

Missouri Public School Career Centers Map

2. Information on how to obtain a license and the requirements for a license when licensure is required for an occupation

Information on how to obtain industry-recognized certificates and credentials

Information on how to obtain a license and the requirements for a license when licensure is required for an occupation 

3. Access to assessments and interest inventories that provide insight into the types of careers that would be suitable for students

4. Resources that describe the types of skills and occupations most in demand in the current job market and those skills and occupations likely to be in high demand in future years

5. Resources that describe the typical salaries for occupations and salary trends

6. Information on how to obtain financial assistance for postsecondary education

7. Information on how to choose a college, school, or apprenticeship that aligns with the student's career goals and values

8. Information on self-employment

9. Resources related to creating a resume, interviewing, networking, and finding job opportunities

10. Information on the skills and traits necessary to succeed in various careers

Information on the above (3-10) can be found at Missouri Connections

Additional Resources: 

High Demand Occupations FY 2025.pdf

The information regarding our annual performance report rating and ranking percentage is available using the following link:

Launch – MOCAP


Enrollment Period


The superintendent or designee will establish open enrollment periods and registration deadlines for students to enroll in virtual courses offered by the district such as LAUNCH or another MOCAP option.  These enrollment periods and registration deadlines will be strictly enforced unless the superintendent or designee determines that an exception is warranted due to circumstances such as a change in a student’s health or the long-term suspension of a student. Enrollment periods and registration deadlines must align with the district’s academic calendar and assessment schedule to the extent practicable.

A student or parent/guardian must notify the student’s principal or designee before the student may enroll in a district-sponsored virtual course through the district. The student will be enrolled unless the principal or designee, in consultation with the student’s parents/guardians and relevant staff, such as the school counselor or district special education director, determines that there is good cause to refuse the student enrollment in the course. For enrollment in a virtual course, good cause is limited to situations where it is not in the best educational interest of the student to enroll in the course. Enrollment decisions will be made within ten days of receiving the application.

Students or parents/guardians who disagree with the principal’s or designee’s determination about a virtual course can appeal the decision to the Board of Education and the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) as detailed later in this policy. For all other virtual courses, students or parents/guardians may appeal the decision to the superintendent or designee, and the superintendent's or designee’s decision will be final. The superintendent or designee is authorized to consult the district’s attorney prior to deciding.

Students with Disabilities

In general, students with disabilities may enroll in district-sponsored virtual courses using the same approval process applicable to other students. However, in accordance with federal law, if a student receives special education services, the student’s individualized education program (IEP) team may determine that a virtual course is not appropriate for the student even if the course has otherwise been approved. Any appeal of that decision must be made through the special education process rather than to the superintendent or designee or the Board.

If a student who is receiving accommodations for a disability under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act (Section 504) is enrolled in a virtual course, the student’s Section 504 team will determine whether any additional accommodations are necessary for the student.

Attendance and Completion

Students who enroll in district-sponsored virtual courses through the district are expected to actively participate in those courses with the goal of completing the course. If a student does not actively participate in a course or is not successful in the course, the district may remove the student from the virtual course and refuse to enroll the student in virtual courses in the future.

Students enrolled in virtual courses are expected to complete all course requirements in the time allotted for the course. Extensions of time to complete a virtual course will be permitted only in situations where the completion of the course in the allotted time would be impossible due to factors not controlled by the student.

Students enrolled in a district-sponsored course through the district will be considered in attendance for state aid purposes in accordance with law. A completed virtual course shall be counted as no less than 95 percent attendance for purposes of A+ eligibility.

State Required Tests

Students are required to take state-required examinations administered by the district regardless of whether the course for which the examination is required was taken virtually or in the traditional classroom.  Exams include but are not limited to End of Course (EOC) tests, US Constitution test, Missouri Constitution test, and US Citizenship test.


The district will inform students and parents/guardians in handbooks, registration documents, and on the homepage of the district’s website of the option to enroll in virtual courses, including courses offered through Launch, as required by law.


In accordance with state law, the district will pay the cost of student enrollment in virtual courses if:

1.       The student meets eligibility requirements

2.      The student has approval for enrollment in accordance with this policy; and

3.      Taking the course does not cause the student to exceed full-time enrollment in the district. 

In addition to the requirements listed above and in accordance with law, a student is eligible to enroll in a virtual course through the district if:

1.       The student resides in and is enrolled in the district on a full-time basis;

2.      The student has attended a public school or charter school for at least one semester immediately prior to enrolling in a virtual course*; and

3.      The enrollment is approved by the principal or designee.

*A student will be excused from this requirement if he or she has a documented medical or psychological diagnosis or condition that prevented the student from attending a school in the district during the previous semester.

The district is not obligated to provide students computers, equipment, or Internet access to take a virtual course unless otherwise required by law to accommodate a student with a disability.

District counselors or certificated staff will develop an individual career and academic plan (ICAP) for district students enrolled in three or more virtual courses. If a student already has an ICAP, the plan will be reviewed and modified as necessary. In accordance with law, school counselors cannot be required to make the final decision regarding a student’s enrollment in a virtual course.


If the principal or designee determines that it is not in a student’s best educational interest to take a virtual course, the student and the parents/guardians will be notified in writing, provided an explanation for the decision and informed that the student or parents/guardians may appeal the decision to the Board. However, if the student is receiving special education services, the student’s IEP team will make the final decision regarding student enrollment in a virtual course in accordance with federal law, and the decision must be appealed through the special education process rather than through the Board.

If the student or parent/guardian appeals to the Board, the principal or designee will provide the Board written reasons for denying the student’s enrollment, and the student or parent/guardian will provide written reasons the student should be allowed to take the course. Both documents will be retained by the Board and will be incorporated into the minutes. In addition, the student, parents/guardians and the principal or designee will be allowed to present their arguments at a Board meeting.

The appeal to the Board shall be held in closed session. The Board will consider the information presented and release a written decision within 30 calendar days of the meeting. The student or parents/guardians may appeal the decision to DESE. The appeal to DESE must be filed within seven days of the Board’s final decision.


The district will pay a virtual course provider a monthly prorate amount based on a student’s completion of assignments and assessments, subject to the cost limitations in state law. The district will stop making monthly payments if a student discontinues enrollment. The superintendent or designee is authorized to negotiate lower course rates with providers when possible.

Monitoring and Reporting

The district will monitor the progress and success of students enrolled in virtual courses. The district may remove a student from a course if it does not meet the educational needs of the student. The district may terminate access to a course or refuse to allow students to enroll in a virtual course if the district determines that the course is not meeting the educational needs of the students enrolled in the course.

All concerns regarding the quality or delivery of a virtual course will be reported to DESE. The district may consider concerns regarding the quality of a course when making approval decisions for other students. In addition, the district will consider recommendations made by DESE regarding continued or future enrollment in virtual courses.


The district will accept transfer credits students earn by successfully passing approved virtual courses if the course provider gives the district an official record of the completed course and the grade earned. Students who transfer to the district while enrolled in virtual courses will be allowed to continue enrollment in those courses even if the course provider is not one used by the district.

Requests for virtual courses will follow the district enrollment period. Students will be able to request online courses for the 2022-2023 school year during the district’s open enrollment which is determined by the superintendent of schools. Enrollment is open August 1st through August 19th. At this time, any circumstance which falls outside the standard online course request must begin at the student’s home school for review.