What is AoIT?
The Academy of Information Technology (AoIT) is a four-year career academy affiliated with the National Academy Foundation (NAF). Career academies are for students who want to attend post-secondary school or begin a career right after high school. AoIT provides a smaller learning community in which a cohort of students have core and IT classes together. Academy teachers share the cohort students and work together to integrate technology into their curricula as well as develop interdisciplinary projects.
Who is it for?
Cabarrus County Schools will have open enrollment for the 2021-2022 school year, so any incoming freshman that lives in the Cabarrus County Schools district will have school of choice as long as they are enrolled in an academy. Our academies are capped at 75 students per cohort. We will fill the seats from our feeder school (Harris Road) first and then open up to other schools.
Does my student need to be experienced in technology?
No. Students will learn IT skills in various IT courses over four years. Students should enjoy using and learning about technology.
Is AoIT only for students interested in IT careers?
No. While many AoIT students are interested in IT and engineering careers, the skills students will learn in AoIT are transferable to most any career choice.
How are students admitted?
A lottery is used to fill the spots with a maximum of 75 students. If more than 75 students apply, the lottery is used to determine the order of the wait-list. Students may be brought in from the wait-list over the summer before 9th grade if a spot opens.
Why is a lottery used?
A career academy should be homogeneous to the school’s student population. A lottery is the most equitable method to achieve this. Interest in IT and grades are NOT a factor in admittance.
Can my student take honors or AP classes in AoIT?
Yes. In core AoIT classes, such as English, Social Studies, Math, and Science, students will be in combined classes of academic and honors depending on what level they are recommended for. Teachers will differentiate assessments for the academic and honors levels. Students will also be able to enroll in honors level programming courses throughout their high school career. In 10th, 11th and 12th grades, students may take AP courses but they will not be AoIT cohort classes. Their AP selections include but are not limited to courses offered in English, Social Studies, Math, Science, World Language, Art, Computer Science and Computer Programming. Their course selection will not have any effect on their status in AoIT.
Can my student take other elective courses?
Yes. While IT courses are required in AoIT in the four years, students still have the opportunity to take many other elective courses. AoIT IT courses (CTE) do meet the graduation requirement.
Is AoIT more difficult?
No. All courses follow the NC standard course of study. What will be different is the integration of technology into core classes, interdisciplinary approach/teaching, and project based learning. Work-based learning and 21st Century Skills are also included in AoIT courses. AoIT students will have many projects that involve working in teams and giving presentations.
Can an AoIT student still participate in athletics or clubs?
Yes. AoIT students may participate in athletics and/or clubs that are after the school day.
Students will be given the opportunity to participate in technical student organizations as well.
Are there any costs or fees to be in AoIT?
The Academy is free of charge. Students will have an option to purchase an AoIT shirt (approximately $28) in 9th grade. We take advantage of work-based learning opportunities, so there may be costs for trips taken for transportation and/or registration for the events. The inability to pay any expense will not have any impact on student participation in AoIT. Funding is available for these situations.
Can my student drop out of AoIT?
We expect to have a wait-list for enrolling in the AoIT Program. As a result, we expect students and their parents/guardians to seriously consider their decision to enroll because we expect a four-year commitment to the program’s responsibilities and requirements.
Most of the time conflicts with a student’s obligations can be worked out to allow students to meet their goals and stay in the AoIT. If the conflict cannot be resolved, then the student must meet with the academy coordinator and counselor to discuss withdrawl and the student and parent must complete a form to withdraw from the program. The decision to drop will be made on a case-by-case basis.