Program Groups are categories containing all the academic programs you can apply to using GoCPS. This is one of the best ways to explore your options because when you apply, you’ll apply to individual programs within a school vs. to the school as a whole.
Agriculture & Horticulture
Students studying pathways in Agricultural Sciences learn about the science, business, and technology of plant and animal production. Each Agricultural Sciences pathway exposes students to classroom and laboratory experiences. In the classroom, students learn concepts and theories dealing with agricultural and agribusiness topics. Classroom learning is followed by the laboratory experiences where students are able to put concepts and theories into practice.
Business & Finance
Students with an interest in owning their own business, making a profit, and managing finances should look into pathways in the Business & Finance cluster. Pathways in Business introduce students to financial planning, banking, insurance, international finance, entrepreneurship principles, and accounting practices.
Career Academies offer intensified resources that provide high school students with hands-on experiences and the opportunity to visit local businesses and shadow business professionals in various career areas.
Construction & Architecture
Programs in Architecture and Construction cover various stages of a construction project – from idea to design to production. The programs in this cluster offer you the opportunity to bring your design ideas to life, work on hands-on construction projects, and master the skills necessary to pursue a career in this field.
Culinary & Hospitality
The Culinary and Hospitality pathways are strongly structured with reading, writing, math, and science. Students are provided with opportunities needed to master managing a hotel and employees, assemble and prepare a restaurant menu, and develop exceptional customer service skills. Culinary and Hospitality pathways prepare students to meet the demands and flexibility necessary to be successful in this emerging and artistic field.
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Education & Training
In the Education and Training pathway, students gain knowledge about careers related to family and human services, learn fundamentals of current educational theories, along with hands-on training with children. Education and Training helps to prepare students for college and to pursue a degree in education.
Fine & Performing Arts
Fine and performing arts programs encourage students’ creative and artistic expression, and develop their interest in art, music, dance, and/or drama. Faculty and students work with some of the city’s premier arts institutions and artists, both in the schools and throughout the city.
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Schools that fall in this category offer a curriculum of general education that includes a wide variety of subject areas, including the core subjects of English/language arts, mathematics, science, and social studies, and may also include world language, art, music, and physical education. The general education program does not specialize in one particular area of the curriculum.
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Pathways in Health Sciences present students with an opportunity to learn about medical terminology and the body systems, in addition to investigate how illnesses are prevented, treated, and managed. Health Sciences will expose students to the myriad of careers in healthcare and a future that is dedicated to helping others. Students can earn certifications and engage with health professionals through speakers, site visits, job shadows, and internships that will advance their knowledge and experience of the healthcare profession. Topics include safety and infection control, CPR & First Aid, human growth and development, vital signs, nutrition and wellness, and geriatric care.
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These programs provide a challenging curriculum that is designed for academically advanced students. Many of the courses offered to students are at the honors or Advanced Placement level, and in some schools, students have an opportunity to take college credit-bearing coursework.
Pathways in Information Technology prepare students for occupations in the fields of computer operations and programming, software applications, web development, and computer repair/installation. Students are provided with opportunities to earn certifications that will expand their career options in Information Technology. The Information Technology pathways supply students with experiences that translate into careers and success after high school.
International Baccalaureate (IB)
The International Baccalaureate aims to develop inquiring, knowledgeable and caring young people who help to create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect. To this end, the organization works with schools, governments and international organizations to develop challenging programs of international education and rigorous assessment. These programs encourage students across the world to become active, compassionate and lifelong learners who understand that other people, with their differences, can also be right.
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Law & Public Safety
In Law & Public Safety pathways, students are introduced to careers in law and criminal justice. Students are provided with college preparatory education and in-depth exposure to curriculum including topics like criminal justice, law enforcement, family law, forensic science, and much more. This pathway is a great fit for students who want to serve their communities and get real-life experience in courtrooms, law enforcement, and crime scene investigation.
Manufacturing & Engineering
Pathways in Manufacturing & Pre-Engineering prepare students for college and a variety of entry-level jobs in advanced manufacturing. Students will learn the process of designing, assembling, and packaging items that we use every day. Computer technology and state-of-the art machines are used to develop and strengthen knowledge and understanding of concepts learned in the classroom. Coursework emphasizes the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) skills that are currently in high demand.
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Media & Communication Arts
Pathways in Media & Communication Arts provide students with the opportunity to learn about the ever-growing array of new media forms. Students who are interested in applying their artistic talent to practical real-world problems or who want to be a producer, director, journalist, website designer, video game programmer, and multimedia artist can explore their interests and find the right career path for them.
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Personal Care Services
The Personal Care Services pathway prepares students for careers in the professional hair and beauty industry by providing real world experiences in state-of-the art cosmetology and barbering labs. Students participate in citywide events and activities that provide exposure to exciting professional and training opportunities in the field. Students can earn certifications and engage with industry professionals through speakers, site visits, job shadows, and internships that will advance their knowledge and experience of the hair and beauty profession. Topics include safety and infection control, hair cutting, hair coloring, chemical texturizing, professionalism, and entrepreneurship.
Selective Enrollment High Schools
Selective Enrollment High Schools provide academically advanced high school students with a challenging and enriched college preparatory experience. Each of the Selective Enrollment High Schools offers a rigorous curriculum with mainly honors and Advanced Placement (AP) courses. The schools strive to develop students’ critical and analytical thinking skills, and promote diverse academic inquiry by bringing together students from a wide range of backgrounds and experiences. Testing is required in order for students to be considered for these programs.
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Service Leadership Academies
The Service Leadership Academies are unique four-year high schools that prepare students for college and subsequent careers. Although students wear uniforms and operate in a structured environment, these schools are not intended to prepare students for the military. Rather, students take part in unprecedented leadership opportunities and cocurricular activities, including college trips and citywide competitions, in a nurturing, safe, and healthy environment in which they can realize their full potential.
Special education prepares all students with a variety of disabilities for postsecondary success by implementing equitable practices through the use of evidence-based practices and curricula, quality instruction, and equitable supports that focus on closing learning gaps in the least restrictive environment. Chicago Public Schools offer a variety of programs to accommodate all of the students needs. Cluster classrooms are designed for students requiring a significantly modified curriculum with moderate to intensive supports and in a separate classroom from general education peers for the majority of the day (over 61% of the day).
The Early College Stem Schools connect high school, college, and the world of work through dynamic partnerships and a new vision for college and career readiness. Partnerships allow students to pursue a career in technology and gain skills for the 21st century workforce; students have the opportunity to graduate with industry certifications and up to two years of college credit. In addition, students benefit from workplace learning experiences through internships, and they are matched with professional mentors in their career path so that they gain valuable knowledge and experience.
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Careers in the Transportation pathway are a good fit for those who want to ensure that everyone and everything get to the right place, on-time, and within budget. Students in this pathway explore career options that support equipment and transportation systems, keeping everything in motion in the air and on land.
World language programs provide students with intensive instruction in a world language to acquire proficiency in the new language as well as develop cultural understanding and awareness.