Resource Supplement to VA's Portrait of a Graduate/ACPS's High School 2022

In anticipation for the release of my podcast with Dr. Pam Moran and Dr. Matt Haas, I decided to post a supplement this week.  During the session we discussed Albemarle County’s “High School 2022” initiative, which is closely related to the Commonwealth of Virginia’s decision to revise its Standards under the title, “Portrait of a Graduate.”  The rationale for this shift is that the Virginia Board of Education, after researching views on the purpose of education, came to the conclusion that “earning a diploma should be about more than passing a prescribed series of courses and tests […]. [And that] graduates need skills and attributes such as critical thinking, creative thinking, communication, collaboration and citizenship, to be successful in life” (  As per the VA Board of Education…

In 2022, a graduate should be able to:

  • Achieve and apply appropriate academic and technical knowledge (content knowledge);
  • Demonstrate productive workplace skills, qualities, and behaviors (workplace skills);
  • Build connections and value interactions with others as a responsible and responsive citizen (community engagement and civic responsibility); and
  • Align knowledge, skills and personal interests with career opportunities (career exploration).

Here are a few YouTube clips in which they give more info:

Below is a .pdf of how the VDOE envisions the pieces coming together:

According to the VDOE they envision districts supporting the inclusion of work-world experiences (through “internships and externships”} in order to build what’s termed “soft-skills.”   This term came up a lot.  It’s basically the skills that are not related to the actual knowledge of a specific career, but rather the way in which the specific work is carried out through the social-emotional work that occurs with the heavier reliance on teaming in the work world.  Or, as I prefer to think of it, soft-skills are the human component of any work.

The Commonwealth has also mentioned that each community would find ways to foster these skills in their students and that different districts will implement the program differently—basically giving agency to the localities to determine their priorities.  Albemarle County Schools has taken this challenge and applied itself to developing something that they feel will meet the aims of the VDOE.  Below are the links to the "High School 2022" initiative for more info:

These two links provide info on what 2022 can be, and how ACPS got to their plan

This link is the research that helped to inform the decisions made regarding Albemarle’s “High School 2022”