A bipartisan bill is on the move in the General Assembly that would require middle and high-school students enrolled in traditional public schools to complete a career development plan.

Under Senate Bill 193, students must complete a career development plan by the end of seventh grade, and the plan must be revised by the end of 10th grade.

The career development plans must include a “self-assessment of the student’s aptitudes, skills, values, personality, and career interests,” exploration and identification of aligned career pathways, alignment of academic courses and extracurricular activities with the student’s identified career interests, and creation of a career portfolio containing documentation such as a resume.

Charter schools are encouraged to join in creating the career plans, but they aren’t required to.

A secondary portion of the bill requires the N.C. Department of Public Instruction, in cooperation with the State Board of Education, to “study and recommend how to develop individual graduation plans for all students beginning in eighth grade to achieve the goal of success for all students in graduating career and college ready with the support and involvement of both the student’s parents and school personnel.”

“You need a career plan, but you also need a path that takes you not only to that career but to graduation,” said Rep. Hugh Blackwell, R-Burke.

S.B. 193 passed the state Senate 49-0 on March 28. The measure cleared the House Education Committee July 12 and next heads to the Rules Committee.

If passed, the changes would kick in for the 2024-2025 school year.