The BASD Mission in Practice


The Bethlehem Area School District, in partnership with the home and community, is committed to providing a safe and supportive environment in which each student will attain the knowledge, skills, and attitudes necessary to become a productive citizen and life-long learner in our technologically demanding and culturally diverse society.


The job of the Bethlehem Area School District is to graduate students who are college and career ready. Our goal is to provide students with an educational experience that best matches their skills and interests while stretching students to become the best they can be. The path to success is as varied as the individual students we serve. The common variable is that all students must rise to the increased rigor of the PA Common Core Curriculum and the new Keystone graduation requirements. By aligning coursework to students’ post-secondary goals, students see the relevance in what they are learning and are more likely to achieve at higher levels.

The 21st Century high school is about more than just the acquisition of credits. Students should begin planning for their post-secondary success even before they enter high school. As students begin the scheduling process for their ninth-grade year, counselors will work closely with students to chart a path that, if successfully completed, will give students a competitive advantage when applying to the college or career of their choice.

For those students who wish to accelerate their high school experience and graduate from high school with some college credits in hand, the Bethlehem Area School District offers a wide variety of Advanced Placement and dual enrollment opportunities.  Students wishing to participate in a more challenging curriculum but who do not wish to acquire college credits may choose from a number of honors courses in each of the major content areas. Some students may wish to begin their career training while still in high school. The Bethlehem Area Vocational-Technical School (BAVTS), in partnership with the BASD, offers students industry-benchmarked training in high-priority occupations. Ninth-graders desiring to accelerate their career preparation may choose to participate in the FastTrack program, a BAVTS elective offering designed specifically for our ninth-grade students.

Depending upon their college and career goals, students may follow a flexible path that is a combination of those described above. A student wishing to become an engineer may take AP Calculus and AP Physics but opt for honors or college preparatory English. A student who desires to become a writer may opt for AP English Language and Literature, journalism and creative writing electives, and honors or college preparatory math and science. A student whose goal is to be an electrician may opt for AP or honors physics and coursework at BAVTS. The college and career goal of the student, along with his or her interests, should drive the student’s schedule.

All of our students, no matter their career path, benefit from community partnerships. The BASD is working with local organizations such as Lehigh University, Moravian College, Northampton Community College, ArtsQuest, PBS, and St. Luke’s Hospital to create real-world learning opportunities for our students related to specific career paths. In addition, students must complete sixty hours of community service in order to graduate. This requirement can be tailored to students’ interests so that they can explore careers of their choice before committing to a college major.

We are partners in each student’s educational experience. Providing each student with a flexible, personalized learning plan will ensure success beyond high school.