PBLWorks Announces its 2022 PBL Champions

Novato, CA (July 27, 2022) – PBLWorks, the leading provider of professional development for Project Based Learning (PBL), has announced its 2022 PBL Champions – a program that honors schools, districts and individuals for their commitment to high quality Project Based Learning. The 2022 PBL Champions are:

  • District PBL Champion
    • Broward County Public Schools (Fort Lauderdale, Florida)
  • School PBL Champion
    • Thomas A. Edison Career and Technical Education High School (Queens, New York)
  • Individual PBL Champion
    • Kendall Van Valkenburg, High School English Teacher at Red Canyon Alternative High School (Gypsum, Colorado)

“We were thrilled to see so many great nominations and learn about the great work happening in classrooms, schools, and districts across the country,” said PBLWorks CEO Bob Lenz in announcing the PBL Champions at the 2022 PBL World conference. “I want to extend my deepest appreciation and admiration for all of you who are weathering the storms this year staying committed to our students, families, and communities. From the bottom of my heart and on behalf of our team at PBLWorks.”

During the 2022 PBL World Conference, PBLWorks also announced the first ever recipient of the “John Larmer Lifetime Learner Award” named after author and PBLWorks’ longtime editor-in-chief John Larmer. This year’s recipient was Rose Moe, a 6th-grade math teacher at Lincoln Middle School in the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District. Rose was provided complimentary registration for PBL World 2022.…Read More

How to fund your CTE program

Career and Technical Education (CTE) programs provide students with relevant tools and skills that set them up for success in life and their careers, including those not typically part of traditional academic programs.

These programs offer something unique and, in many cases, tap into a student’s personal interests – even as they still provide a valuable education experience. CTE programs have countless benefits to students, and funding to implement, sustain, or grow your existing CTE programs is crucial. While there are many free resources available, having the funds to purchase basic equipment or upgrade to premium services can make a huge difference.

So where do you start when looking to fund your CTE program? The most significant source of United States government funds for CTE comes from The Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act, also known as “Perkins V” or “Perkins CTE grants.” It’s a grant, meaning you don’t have to pay it back, but the application process is competitive, and you’ll need to satisfy requirements as part of the grant.…Read More

5 steps to building a robust online CTE program

For more than 16 years, my goal has been to help students discover their passions and see their potential through career and technical education (CTE). From when I taught math and programming in a brick-and-mortar school, to creating and designing CTE courses, to teaching AP computer science and the foundations of programming at Florida Virtual School (FLVS), to now researching, developing, and maintaining the FLVS CTE program alongside my incredible colleagues, CTE has never been more important to me. 

You may be asking yourself, why are you so passionate about CTE? The short answer is that during my teaching career, I quickly learned that some students do not want to go to college. Rather than forcing them to do something that their skills sets, talents, and desires don’t align with, I encouraged them to explore their passions to see if they could turn it into a career later in life. All students deserve the opportunity to do what they love, and it’s our jobs, as educators, to help them get there. 

Additionally, according to the U.S. Department of Education, eight years after their expected graduation date, students who focused on career and technical education courses in high school had higher median annual earnings than students who did not. There are also 30 million jobs in the United States that do not require a bachelor’s degree that pay median earnings of $55,000 or more, further highlighting how CTE programs can set students up for success. …Read More

4 ways to enrich CTE programs

Right now, there’s a labor shortage. The U.S. has more jobs available than there are people to work them. This means individuals who are just starting their careers can more easily snag positions in trade occupations, such as construction, cosmetology, HVAC, and more. But in order to take advantage of these opportunities, students first need to know that they are available.

StrataTech Education Group’s survey found that while 70 percent of students attend high schools that offer career and technical education programs, only 32 percent promote the trades as a potential post-graduation path. Despite this, 51 percent of students consider pursuing trade school. What holds them back? A lack of support, confidence, or knowledge–challenges that high schools can solve with enriched CTE programs.

If more schools enhanced their CTE programs, more students would feel comfortable pursuing the trades. The good news is that boosting program participation is not a huge investment. In fact, bringing in passionate professionals could be enough to get students excited about their career options. Here are four ways to get started:…Read More

Delaware Department of Education, DuPont and Discovery Education Launch First-of-Its-Kind Partnership Supporting STEM, Career, and Technical Education Statewide

DOVER, Del., Nov. 22, 2021 – The Delaware Department of Education (DDOE), DuPont (NYSE: DD) and Discovery Education today announced a new, first-of-its-kind partnership that will increase student access to high-quality STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) instructional resources, as well as instructional materials and other supports to enhance career and technical education programs across the state. The three-year partnership program directly supports the Delaware Pathways initiative — an innovative effort helping students develop the academic, technical, and employability skills needed for successful, in-demand jobs across Delaware.

“Acquiring academic knowledge, technical skills, and meaningful work experience gives students the freedom to choose their life’s path,” said Delaware Secretary of Education Susan Bunting. “This new partnership provides Delaware students an even better opportunity to develop the skills needed for the careers of tomorrow. Thus, I look forward to supporting the progress of this exciting new collaboration.”

“Connecting what is being taught in the classroom to Delaware employers is critical,” said Luke Rhine, Director, Career & Technical Education and STEM Initiatives at the Delaware Department of Education. “The resources provided through this partnership will support middle school and high school teachers as they build bridges between classrooms and careers for all students. We are thankful for partners like DuPont who share our goals related to STEM- and career-focused education.”…Read More

EdisonLearning and Pointful Education Partner To Expand Access To Online Career and Technical Courses

Pointful Education’s suite of CTE and elective offerings are now available to all secondary students enrolled in eCourses through EdisonLearning

EdisonLearning a premier provider of digital learning solutions for grades 6-12, and Pointful Education, a leading publisher of career and elective courses, today announced a partnership that expands EdisonLearning’s Career and Technical Education (CTE) and elective offerings with the integration of Pointful Education’s online courses.

The partnership will offer secondary students of all current and future EdisonLearning partners a wide variety of learning opportunities spanning several career pathways with courses ranging from eSports to Entrepreneurship. The courses feature project-based learning, engaging video content, a variety of assessments, and interactive activities. These CTE and elective courses add to the 150+ courses already available in the EdisonLearning library and expand schools’ access to well-rounded content to support students’ college, career, civic and life readiness.…Read More

Xello Partners with National ACTE to Launch Student Career Development Content Series

Xello, a modern K-12 college, career and future readiness program, is partnering with the Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE) to support the release of a series of publication briefs, online lessons and webinars covering student career development for career and technical education (CTE) educators.

“We have a long-standing relationship with ACTE and we’re eager to build upon  our work with them to help equip CTE educators and counselors with high-quality resources to support student career development,” said Matt McQuillen, CEO and Co-founder at Xello. “ACTE’s Quality CTE Program of Study Framework continues to raise the bar for CTE education – an effort Xello is proud to support, and one that aligns closely with our commitment to supporting all students, all pathways.”

This new set of resources supports ACTE’s Quality CTE Program of Study Framework by providing CTE educators with pragmatic ways to support student career development. The new content series will highlight five topics, including:…Read More

Wisconsin launches online CTE school

Online CTE model will provide hands on training and dual credit opportunities for middle and high school students

Online learning provider K12 Inc. announced the opening of Destinations Career Academy of Wisconsin, an online career and technical education (CTE) high school in Wisconsin using the curriculum and academic programs by K12 Inc. It also offers a construction apprenticeship program in partnership with industry leaders.

“Studies have shown that by 2020 two out of three jobs will require some postsecondary education or training and that job-related skills can dramatically increase employment options for new graduates,” said Stuart J. Udell, CEO of K12. “We have a unique expertise in delivering online course content to young students and the addition of career and technical courses like the ones we are offering through our Destinations model will allow them to explore potential careers and get a jump on the certification process.”

K12’s career readiness offering uses an end-to-end approach, designed to prepare students to enter the workforce or pursue other post-secondary options. Students can access multiple versions of core online high school courses and opt to take CTE courses in one of four Career Clusters: Architecture and Construction; Business, Management, and Administration; Health Science; or Information Technology. These Clusters are designed to give students a head start on their career goals by earning technical and specialty trade credentials, college credits, and workplace experiences.…Read More

Study: Tech classes correlate with better achievement

On average, students enrolled in CTE programs showed better attendance and grades than their peers

High school students in Florida who took at least one technology course and industry certification exam had higher attendance rates and GPAs, on average, than students with similar backgrounds who did not take such a course, a new study finds.

Just what this means is unclear, but the researchers who conducted the study surmise that students who take technology classes preparing them with real-world skills might be more engaged in school.…Read More

States form coalition to boost career training

The coalition expects other states to join the network in the weeks and months ahead.

More than a year after the release of a Harvard University report encouraging the development of more pathways to careers for young adults, a coalition of six states has begun taking steps toward offering viable alternatives for students beyond attending a four-year college.

The Pathways to Prosperity report by Harvard University’s Graduate School of Education concluded millions of students are being shortchanged in preparation for a successful career by a one-size-fits-all approach that encourages everyone to earn a bachelor’s degree.…Read More