CTE advocates want more funding as demand increases

This story was originally published by Chalkbeat. Sign up for their newsletters at ckbe.at/newsletters.

A decade ago, Latisa Kindred fought to bring back the electricity program at Simeon Career Academy, which had been shut down by the school’s principal due to low enrollment. The effort by Kindred, students, alumni, and elected officials paid off – and the program was reinstated.

Now, Simeon’s career and technical education program, where Kindred continues to teach electricity to high school students, is being held up as a model. Last week, Mayor Brandon Johnson toured the high school, visiting carpentry, electricity, and culinary arts classrooms – and even sampling a large breakfast of sausages, bacon, eggs, potatoes, and toast prepared by the high school’s chefs.…Read More

DEI in action: eSN Innovation Roundtable

DEI (diversity, equity, and inclusion) is a commonly used acronym, but what does it mean in the context of day-to-day operations in a school district?

As many experts will point out, DEI initiatives are prone to fail when they aren’t getting at the crux of the issue—existing systemic processes and challenges that prevent promising solutions and DEI-focused policies from being successful.

During an eSchool News Innovation Roundtable with a focus on DEI, moderated by eSchool News Content Director Kevin Hogan, district leaders delved into the critical but complicated topic of DEI in school districts. Roundtable participants included:…Read More

6 trends to watch in K-12 schools in 2024

This post originally appeared on the Christensen Institute’s blog and is reposted here with permission.

Key points:

As we move through the beginning of 2024, parent power, rethinking assessments, and career and technical education (CTE) for every student are some of the trends rippling through K-12 education. …Read More

Teacher Shortage Solutions for Computer Science and CTE

The lack of computer science technology educators in middle schools continues to be a genuine crisis, especially considering the critical role of STEM education in preparing students for future careers. Traditional hiring practices often result in non-specialist educators teaching computer science, leading to challenges in delivering effective instruction.

Graham Celine, VP of Business Development & Marketing for Intelitek, which offers the online platform CoderZ, emphasized this topic last month at FETC and in this conversation with eSchool. CoderZ aims to address this gap by providing comprehensive tools and resources for both students and educators, enabling structured and engaging computer science education. 

With increasing recognition of computer science as a fundamental skill, particularly evidenced by state standards mandating its inclusion in curricula, CoderZ offers a solution aligned with educational goals and industry demands. Graham says the program’s flexible implementation options cater to various educational settings, from individual subscriptions to district-wide adoption. Moreover, he points to the product’s assessment strategies focused on student outcomes, employing a combination of automated evaluations and teacher-led assessments to ensure comprehensive learning assessment. Have a listen:…Read More

iCEV Recognizes Putnam County Schools as the District’s Student Becomes the 100,000th Certification Earner on the iCEV Testing Platform

Lubbock, TX – Putnam County Schools in Tennessee is recognized by iCEV, a leading producer of Career & Technical Education (CTE) curriculum, industry certification testing, and data management, for having the 100,000th certification earner on the iCEV Testing Platform.

Serving more than 12,000 students across 22 schools, Putnam County Schools has long been recognized as a leader in promoting equitable access to CTE programs and career opportunities. In Putnam County Schools, CTE courses are aligned to relevant industry certifications that will help earners begin successful careers.

“It’s important that we provide equal access to all of our students,” said Jaclyn Vester, CTE Program Director for Putnam County Schools. “We want to make sure all of our students are leaving with the tools they need to be college and career ready.”…Read More

The 5 best ways to celebrate CTE Month 2024

This post on CTE Month originally appeared on iCEV’s blog and is reposted here with permission.

Key points:

As a career and technical education (CTE) teacher, you know the importance of preparing students for the workforce–no matter which CTE career cluster or pathway they follow.…Read More

Analytics in Action

This special episode of Innovations in Education highlights details from the recent webinar Analytics in Action: Innovative Approaches to Attract, Engage, Grow and Retain Top Talent. Panelists Kevin Agnello, Product Manager, Human Capital Analytics – Frontline Education and Keegan Bassett, Director of Human Resources – Queen Creek Unified School District (AZ) share insights on using analytics unique to their district to optimize recruitment processes, enhance employee engagement, and implement analytics to identify and nurture the best candidates.

Frontline HCM, a connected human capital management suite, equips schools with everything needed to support the entire employee lifecycle from recruiting to retirement. Built exclusively for K-12 education, it includes applicant tracking with proactive recruiting capabilities, seamless onboarding, connected time tracking and absence management functionality, professional learning and evaluation tools, and the ability to oversee benefits, compensation, and position management with automated workflows across the suite. Designed around the unique needs of K-12 and flexible enough to support state and local regulations for time tracking, performance evaluation, and hiring practices, Frontline’s HCM suite brings greater efficiency, productivity, and performance to school districts so leaders have more time to focus on what will most support great teaching and student learning.

…Read More

Trends and challenges impacting CTE in 2024–and beyond

Key points:

In 2024, career and technical education (CTE) is not simply an alternative for students whose future plans don’t include college. It’s a fundamental part of the K-12 experience and a viable career pathway for many students.

CTE lets students understand the relevance of what they’re learning in school. It exposes them to career pathways they might not have known about otherwise. It prepares them for rich and rewarding careers in high-paying, high-demand jobs, whether they go on to attend college or not.…Read More

Voters skeptical of college, more supportive of CTE

This story was originally published by Chalkbeat. Sign up for their newsletters at ckbe.at/newsletters.

It’s more important for Colorado schools to prepare students for the workforce than to prepare them to attend college.

That’s the opinion of more than 60% of respondents in a recent poll of education attitudes among Colorado voters. Magellan Strategies surveyed a representative group of 1,550 Colorado registered voters in September. The survey has a margin of error of 2.5%.…Read More

Unlocking middle school potential: Exploring career education and soft skills 

This episode of Innovations in Education, hosted by Kevin Hogan, is sponsored by McGraw Hill.

In this special edition of Innovations in Education, Content Director Kevin Hogan speaks with McGraw Hill’s Patrick Keeney about various aspects of career and technical education (CTE), including its expansion beyond traditional vocational or trade-focused subjects, the importance of soft skills, and the curriculum and teaching methods used in CTE courses for middle school students.

Patrick emphasizes the value of helping students explore different career paths and develop essential skills early in their education. The conversation also highlights the evolving nature of CTE in middle schools and its potential to provide students with a more comprehensive and purposeful educational experience.…Read More

Certiport Recognizes Washington Teacher as Educator of the Year

Salt Lake City — Certiport, a Pearson VUE business and the leading provider of performance-based IT certification exams that accelerate academic and career opportunities for learners, today announced that Karen Coulombe, career and technical education (CTE) teacher at Lake Stevens High School in Washington state, has been named Certiport’s Educator of the Year. The award was announced at Certiport’s 2023 CERTIFIED Educator Conference, where educators gather to explore the full promise and potential of business and technology certification in the classroom.

Karen teaches both computer applications and computer science to first-year high school students in Lake Stevens. She is also a robotics advisor for the largest VRC Robotics team in Washington. Before becoming a teacher, Karen worked for more than a decade as a licensed avionics technician and airframe and powerplant mechanic for the U.S. Air Force, DynCorp Aerospace, and the Boeing Company. She was also selected for special assignments involving Air Force One and the B2 stealth bomber.

Throughout her career, Karen has been a passionate believer in continuing education and giving back to her community. She has participated in the U.S. Naval Academy’s SET SAIL, Certiport’s National CERTIFIED Conference, STEM Guitars, Space Camp for Educators, the Washington Alliance for Better Schools STEM Externship, and multiple nanotechnology conferences. Karen also serves on the teacher advisory board for the Museum of Pop Culture in Seattle, and as a member of two technical advisory committees.…Read More

Labor market problems start with the K-12 system

The U.S. has a two-pronged labor market problem: a labor shortage and a skills gap. If every unemployed individual in the U.S. found a job right now, there would still be 4 million open jobs. Furthermore, a National Federation of Independent Business survey found that 54 percent of business owners struggle to hire qualified workers. As it becomes increasingly evident that schools are not providing students with the requisite skills to succeed in the labor market, the root of the persistent labor shortage and skills gap in the U.S. can be traced back to the K-12 education system.

However, career and technical education (CTE) programs have shown great promise in addressing this issue. The Department of Education (ED) notes that students who focus on CTE courses in high school have higher median annual earnings, graduation rates, and employment rates than non-CTE students. Despite the proven efficacy of CTE programs, inadequate federal investment remains a primary barrier to implementing successful programs nationwide.

It’s essential to adopt new funding methods and policies to mitigate this barrier, expand CTE programs in K-12 schools, and encourage widespread adoption of these programs to bridge the skills gap and foster student success. Like most education programs, CTE programs are primarily funded by state and local resources. Accordingly, increasing the implementation rates will be predicated on encouraging outside funding sources, such as private-sector partnerships and philanthropic organizations, to bridge the gap in federal funding and support the growth of CTE programs.…Read More