ASSOCIATION FOR CAREER & TECHNICAL EDUCATION®
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The above data point from the ACTE-myCollegeOptions® nationwide survey of CTE students and educators demonstrates that many CTE high school students are taking part in CTE programs that match their career goals. In addition, the survey found that 3 of 10 students are unsure if they will pursue a career in their CTE area of study.
By providing comprehensive career guidance and offering, where possible, a variety of CTE programming choices, CTE educators and counselors can connect secondary students with education that will prepare them for college and careers that match their interests and aptitudes. And even students who don’t wish to continue in their CTE program are saving themselves time and money by learning what does not interest them before going on to postsecondary education or the workforce.
When providing the above information to students, parents, the media and policymakers, share how your CTE program is preparing students for further education and careers through guidance, coursework and extended learning experiences that match their abilities and interests.
You can find more research and data about CTE with ACTE Fact Sheets.
[i] ACTE, “College and Career Ready Through CTE” infographic, 2016.
Posted by Catherine Imperatore on 11/29/2016 at 06:24 PM in Data and Research | Permalink
Today, the U.S. Department of Education announced its final regulations on the accountability, reporting, and state plan provisions of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). The rules address the use of multiple measures, including new indicators of school quality and student success, in state accountability systems, design and delivery of state and district annual report cards, and development of state plans across ESSA programs.
The final regulations make a few important changes from the draft version released in June. As noted in ACTE’s fact sheet on ESSA accountability, states must develop an accountability system that includes measures of student academic achievement as well as non-academic indicators of school quality or student success, which can include career readiness indicators. Under the draft rule, these additional indicators would need to be supported by research that shows the measure contributes to student achievement, or in the case of high schools, higher graduation rates. Because this standard would likely have been too restrictive to allow for many non-academic indicators, and with the urging of ACTE and other education stakeholders, the department broadened the standard in its final rule. It now states that the measure must be supported by research demonstrating that it helps “increase student learning, such as grade point average, credit accumulation, or performance in advanced coursework, or for high schools, graduation rates, postsecondary enrollment, persistence, or completion, or career success.”
You can read a summary of the final rule here. For more ESSA implementation updates, follow the CTE Policy Watch Blog.
Posted by Mitch Coppes on 11/28/2016 at 03:53 PM in ESEA, Executive Branch | Permalink
Last week, President-Elect Trump announced Betsy DeVos as his nominee to lead the U.S. Department of Education. As a cabinet-level appointee, Mrs. DeVos will need to be confirmed by the U.S. Senate. Following the president-elect’s Inauguration in January, DeVos will first appear in the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee for confirmation hearings. The chairman of that committee, Senator Lamar Alexander, himself a former secretary of education, has expressed his support for the appointment. If DeVos is approved by the committee, her appointment will then move to the full Senate where she will need 51 votes for confirmation.
Mrs. DeVos’ experience in education is primarily centered on promoting pro-charter school policies. DeVos chairs the American Federation for Children (AFC), an organization that advocates for school vouchers and tax credits for charter schools. DeVos is unique from previous secretaries in that she has never held public office and has no experience as an educator.
Outside of her position at AFC, DeVos is chairman of the Windquest Group, a privately-held investment management and operating group that invests in technology, manufacturing and energy. DeVos has also been very involved in Republican politics, both as a major fundraiser and as chair of the Michigan Republican Party. In 2006, her husband unsuccessfully ran for governor.
Betsy DeVos’ husband, Dick, is heir to the Amway fortune and founded the West Michigan Aviation Academy, a charter high school on the grounds of the Gerald R. Ford International Airport in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Mr. DeVos is a former member of the Michigan State Board of Education and has served on the Grand Valley State University Board of Control. He spearheaded a Michigan ballot initiative in 2000 to amend the state’s constitution to allow for vouchers and tax credits for private K-12 education.
Next Congress, all indications point to reauthorization of the Higher Education Act as the top legislative education priority. However, as Inside Higher Ed outlines, Mrs. DeVos’ positions on higher education policy are largely unknown. Similarly, aside from establishing a charter school focused on careers in aviation, Mrs. DeVos’ positions on CTE are also not known.
In the 115th Congress, among ACTE’s legislative priorities will be reauthorization of the Perkins Act and higher funding levels for the Perkins Basic State Grant program. We hope Mrs. DeVos’ business background will help her view CTE as a critical component to ensuring today’s students are prepared for college and career success.
Posted by Jarrod Nagurka on 11/28/2016 at 02:50 PM in Advocacy Resources, Executive Branch, In the News | Permalink
Betsy DeVoss, Department of Education
Recently, the U.S. Department of Education announced a joint effort with five other federal agencies, including the Departments of Agriculture, Health and Human Services, Housing and Urban Development, Labor, and Treasury to better align federal support for college access and completion. The new joint guidance focuses on helping students to break down critical barriers to continued education and training, while also supporting colleges and universities in their efforts to expand postsecondary opportunities. Specifically, the Department of Education provided information on assisting unaccompanied homeless youth through FAFSA completion, and offered clarification on what defines an “ability-to-benefit” program for students pursuing a postsecondary education without a high school degree. Additionally, the Department of Labor issued a letter with strategies to support Unemployment Insurance beneficiaries seeking postsecondary education and training, and describes the financial aid accessible to those students. A summary and links to all the available resources across the six agencies is available here.
Posted by Mitch Coppes on 11/22/2016 at 04:55 PM in Executive Branch | Permalink
Recently, congressional leaders signaled their intent to avoid moving forward with a long-term funding bill before the end of the year. As we reported in September, the House and Senate passed a stopgap continuing resolution (CR) for Fiscal Year (FY) 2017 to provide temporary funding for the federal government through December 9. The CR is intended to put the federal budget on autopilot by continuing the current funding levels for federal programs, including Perkins, until a long-term agreement can be reached. However, this CR also included an across-the-board cut to keep overall spending within the required budget caps for the year. Because of the way Perkins funds are budgeted and dispersed, the cut impacted Perkins Basic State Grant advance funding that began rolling out to states on October 1.
Based on revised figures from the U.S. Department of Education, 30 states saw reductions in their Perkins October allocations. The cut could be restored (and has routinely been in years past) if Congress approves a full-year funding bill, but at the urging of the incoming Trump Administration, the House and Senate leadership are planning to put off any consideration of a long-term bill until late March at the earliest. This ongoing budget dysfunction will not only create funding uncertainty for states and local CTE programs who need to prepare budgets for the 2017-18 school year, it will also cause confusion when Congress is supposed to begin work on FY 2018 funding in the coming months. Tell your legislators that they need to stop kicking the can down the road. Let them know that they need to pass a full-year funding bill that could restore cuts to Perkins.
Posted by Mitch Coppes on 11/22/2016 at 11:32 AM in Federal Funding | Permalink
How much are students earning after they’ve achieved postsecondary certificates from various U.S. institutions? New data released from the Department of Education, based on information reported for gainful employment regulations, can begin to answer that question.
According to the data release, which encompasses about 3,700 postsecondary institutions, graduates of certificate programs at public institutions typically earn almost $9,000 more than graduates of comparable programs at for-profit colleges. In addition:
This data will be used to calculate debt-to-earnings rates that help individuals determine their likely return on investment from postsecondary education. Starting in January, institutions must disclose costs, graduation rates and alumni earnings by program, per gainful employment standards.
Posted by Catherine Imperatore on 11/21/2016 at 08:19 AM in Data and Research, Postsecondary Issues | Permalink
The results are in from the states that decided on some key education ballot initiatives last Tuesday. Among the handful of measures that sought to boost funding for public education through tax increases or the sale of state bonds, there were mixed results. Voters in Oklahoma defeated a proposed 1 percent sales tax increase, which was expected to generate $615 million for education, while a 3 percent tax surcharge that has been earmarked to fund public education in Maine was approved. Additionally, the state of California got the go ahead to issue $9 billion in bonds for repairs and upgrades to K-12 schools, community colleges and other postsecondary institutions.
Despite having the backing of Gov. Nathan Deal (R-GA), voters in Georgia rejected the proposed Opportunity School District amendment, which would have given the state the authority to take control of chronically failing public schools. South Dakota’s Amendment R, a measure allowing the state legislature to establish a separate governing body for the state’s four postsecondary technical institutes, was narrowly approved. Voters also gave the thumbs up to an Oregon measure that will mandate state funding for dropout prevention and career and college readiness programs.
Posted by Mitch Coppes on 11/16/2016 at 12:53 PM in Election Watch | Permalink
Did you know that the service branches continually seek new recruits, including 60,700 positions projected for Fiscal Year 2017 for the U.S. Army, across 200-plus career options? In addition, there are many positions in demand at the U.S. Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force and Coast Guard. And afterward, veterans can turn their military-honed skills and experience into fulfilling civilian careers.
ACTE's latest Sector Sheet explores CTE's role in preparing students with the technical, academic and employability skills needed to serve our country in the military's most in-demand occupations and its role in helping veterans transition into the civilian workforce.
Read and share this brief at www.acteonline.org/SectorSheets.
Posted by Catherine Imperatore on 11/16/2016 at 11:23 AM in Data and Research | Permalink
Congress has been on recess since late September, but returned on Monday for the final weeks of this year’s legislative session. It is unclear exactly how long the “lame duck” will last before the 114th Congress formally adjourns, but lawmakers were tentatively scheduled to be in session through December 16. Most speculate that the session will actually be shorter than that though, but no one knows yet exactly how short! The one must-pass item is legislation to address federal funding, which is currently operating under a continuing resolution that lasts through December 9. Congress must either extent that CR or pass a new funding bill through the remainder of the fiscal year.
So what does all this mean for the prospects of a final Perkins reauthorization bill this year? It is still too soon to tell for sure how the next few weeks will unfold, but there is still a chance that a bill could be completed. The biggest factor working against that outcome is first and foremost the time available—if the session is shortened there could only be a couple weeks of activity. In addition, the uncertain agenda of the next Administration and congressional leadership; and continued disagreements over how to approach issues of Secretarial authority, which was the stumbling block of the bill earlier in the year; could put Perkins on hold.
However, there is still a strong desire among many leaders on Capitol Hill and other key stakeholders to get a piece of legislation passed this year. For example, the House Education and the Workforce Committee issued a press statement last week titled “CTE Benefits Everyone,” which promoted the economic value of CTE and the House-passed Perkins bill, H.R. 5587. Rep. Tim Walberg (R-MI) also recently wrote an op-ed connecting CTE to economic growth, particularly in manufacturing, and Rep. John Carter (R-TX) placed another piece about the opportunities CTE provides students. Business and industry leaders continue to promote Perkins reauthorization as well, including groups like the Society of Maintenance and Reliability Professionals and International Paper.
With all this positive attention for CTE, we are hopeful that Members of Congress will prioritize completing work on Perkins reauthorization in the few weeks remaining this year! It is important to note that should work not be completed this year, the reauthorization process will have to start over in the new Congress.
Posted by Alisha Hyslop on 11/15/2016 at 11:52 AM in Perkins | Permalink
Election Day 2016 has come and gone, and in the marquee presidential race the Republican nominee came out on top. With several races still outstanding, it appears that Republicans will also maintain their majorities in both the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate. When the 115th Congress convenes in January, Republicans will continue to set the education policy agenda, but their narrow majority in the Senate will still require Democratic support to pass any new legislation. Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA), who ran as the Democrat nominee for vice president, is expected to return to the Senate and continue his role as co-chair of the Senate CTE Caucus.
For his part, Donald Trump has given little indication as to what education priorities will drive his Administration. He has stated that he will get rid of the Common Core State Standards (which are common academic standards adopted by states) and will eliminate gun-free school zones. He has also noted that he would like to eliminate the U.S. Department of Education or at least “downsize it” significantly. In previous statements, he has expressed support for establishing “centers of excellence” that may incorporate CTE, though he provided no additional details on how his Administration would implement such an initiative. "Vocational training is a great thing. We don't do it anymore," Trump said using the outdated term for CTE at a campaign event in November. “We’d have people [in college] who were brilliant, and we’d have other people who weren’t as brilliant in that way but were brilliant, incredible, when it came to fixing a motor, fixing something.”
Of course secondary and postsecondary CTE programs are available nationwide—preparing students for careers in broad range of in-demand fields, not only the skilled trades. ACTE will work to educate new policymakers on the importance of CTE in equipping students with employability, technical and academic skill they will need for career success. Follow us on the CTE Policy Watch Blog for more election updates.
Posted by Mitch Coppes on 11/09/2016 at 04:19 PM in Election Watch | Permalink
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