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Announcing the NASDCTEc Fall Meeting

July 20th, 2011

Announcing NASDCTEc’s Fall 2011 Meeting
NASDCTEc is pleased to invite you to participate in our annual Fall Meeting, a must-attend professional development experience.

When: Monday, October 24 – Wednesday, October 26, 2011. We will kick off with an opening dinner and meeting Monday at 6 p.m., and end with a closing session wrap up at Noon on Wednesday.
Where: Westin Baltimore Washington Airport (BWI), 1110 Old Elkridge Landing Road, Linthicum, MD 21090
What: This meeting will expose you to new ideas, provide time to work with your colleagues in small groups to develop ways to develop solutions, strategies and the start of policy priorities for future legislation, and allow for valuable interaction with the leadership and staff of your national association.
We look forward to seeing you in the Baltimore/Washington, DC area soon!

MORE INFORMATION about registration, reservations, sessions and much more!

Vermont to Host National Association for Workforce Improvement STEM Conference May 24 & 25

April 18th, 2011

Vermont to Host National Association for Workforce Improvement STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) Conference May 24 & 25, Burlington Hilton

On May 24 and 25, Vermont will host an annual conference of the National Association for Workforce Improvement (NAWI) at the Hilton Hotel in Burlington, VT.  NAWI is a professional organization of high school and community college career and technical education administrators, faculty, business and government from across the United States and as far away as Hawaii, California and Florida.  Between 100-150 professionals are expected to attend some or all of the two day conference.  The event is co-sponsored by the Vermont Department of Education.

The conference will focus on the future of STEM education.  The afternoon of May 24 participants will discuss what STEM education should look like in 5 years.  There are more than 18 one hour workshops, keynote speakers from Washington DC and elsewhere, several interactive sessions the afternoon of May 24 followed by a reception for educators, government and businesses.

To see the program listing and register, go to

This information was submitted by Douglas Webster, Career and Technical Education Coordinator, Vermont Department of Education. Douglas can be reached at 802-578-7738 or

Upcoming Regional Summits Focus on Increasing Community College Grad Rate

February 8th, 2011

Beginning this month, selected participants from community colleges, philanthropic organizations, state and local government, and businesses will come together to address one goal: identifying best institutional practices to increase America’s college graduation rate.

The Department of Education’s Office of Vocational and Adult Education (OVAE) is sponsoring four one-day regional community college summits in an effort to continue strategic conversations started at the first White House Summit on Community Colleges in October. Attendees will discuss the role of community colleges in meeting President Obama’s goal for America – to have the highest proportion of college graduates worldwide by 2020.

Each regional summit will focus on one of the following areas: Serving military personnel, their families and veterans; Supporting the transition of low-skilled adults into community college; Rethinking developmental education, or Creating sustainable business partnerships. Additionally, attendees will take part in panel discussions and breakout sessions on relevant topics (e.g., “Secondary to Postsecondary and Two-to-Four-Year Transfer” or “Industry Partnerships”), and hear remarks from the State’s Governor, the City’s Mayor, and the President of the hosting community college. The regional summits will take place as follows:

February 28: Community College of Philadelphia (Philadelphia, PA)

March 9: Lone Star Community College District (Houston, TX)

March 23: Ivy Tech Community College (Indianapolis, IN)

April 15: San Diego Community College District (San Diego, CA)

Week of April 25: Community College Virtual Symposium

For more information, or if you would like to be considered for attendance at one of the regional summits, please see OVAE’s Community College Regional Summits document.

NASDCTEc Fall Meeting: OVAE Holds Perkins Listening Session

November 5th, 2010

The concluding session at last week’s Fall Meeting in Baltimore, Maryland was a listening session on Perkins reauthorization, moderated by Assistant Secretary for Vocational and Adult Education, Brenda Dann-Messier, and Sharon Miller, the director of the Division of Academic and Technical Education. Assistant Secretary Dann-Messier told the attendees that this listening session was going to be the start of a national conversation about Perkins reauthorization. She and her staff plan to host a series of listening sessions that will conclude at NASDCTEc’s Spring meeting in April 2011. She also said OVAE is soliciting feedback and comments from the public about Perkins reauthorization at

The session was structured around four topic areas: Programs of Study, secondary to postsecondary transitions, performance measures, and whether there should be more specific or common measures and definitions, including regulations.

Programs of Study

  • States questioned how the OVAE 10 component framework would affect the work states have already done in developing and implementing POS
  • It is appropriate for the federal legislation to encourage transition between learner levels
  • Many states felt they have been successful in implementing POS, but there have been some obstacles:

o   Need to better engage postsecondary, but Perkins does not mandate secondary and postsecondary collaboration

o   Need a clear definition of POS

o   Not all community colleges offer all POS, so it can be limiting for students

o   It is also limiting for students that many four-year colleges do not accept credit from two-year institutions

Secondary to Postsecondary Transitions

  • There was agreement from many states that articulation agreements help students transition from secondary to postsecondary, but there remain problems that states must overcome:

o   Two-year schools are struggling to get four-year schools to accept credit

o   Not all states have statewide articulation agreements

o   As more and mores students flood into community colleges, there is less of a priority in serving high school students through articulation agreements and dual enrollment

  • There was some concern about the ability of federal legislation to mandate secondary to postsecondary transitions in some states because of their governance structures, especially if the State Director only has authority over one system (secondary or postsecondary)
  • Guidance and counseling would help with transitions

Performance Measures

  • There was some concern from states about several of the current performance measures:

o   Academic attainment at secondary level – because students are often tested before 11th grade (when most students begin CTE), it is tough to the impact of CTE on academic attainment

o   Certificate completion at postsecondary level – the results go to the students, and it is hard for states to track this information

o   Technical skill attainment at secondary level – this is tough to measure, and is not always appropriate at the secondary level

o   Placement at the secondary level – tough to track because of FERPA restrictions on collecting data

Common measures/definitions and regulations

  • While a handful of states said they would want to head in this direction, it seems unlikely to happen because it would be too tough to accomplish
  • Other states argued that the drive to make states too similar is the wrong direction to go in

NASDCTEc Fall Meeting: Levers of Change

November 5th, 2010

During a workshop session facilitated by Langdon Morris of Innovation Labs, Fall Meeting attendees learned about the “levers of change” though a series of case studies aimed at highlighting how companies have transformed their brand, their strategies and their vision. Lessons learned at this session were translated to how State Directors and the CTE community can transform CTE by putting the new vision, Reflect, Transform, Lead, into action as attendees worked together in small groups.

One of the takeaways from this session was that failure is not always a bad thing because the faster you fail, the quicker you can reach success.

We also learned that the closer you get to changing a system, the harder it pushes back. Therefore, each movement, company or organization needs three players to make change happen:

  • Creative Genius – this person asks questions that lead to breakthroughs and innovation, and help turn these ideas into action
  • Innovation Champion – he or she encourages risk taking and experimenting; serves as the bridge between strategy and the innovation process.
  • Leader – a leader will move the organization towards change by influencing the system and supporting innovation.

These three players must work together in order for change to happen. Who serves in these roles in your organization?

NASDCTEc Fall Meeting a Success; Ohio Shares Vision Journey, Considering it an Emotional Boost to Work Already Begun

November 4th, 2010

The NASDCTEc fall meeting has come to a close, and was a great success!

MEETING EVALUATION…If you have not had a chance to submit an evaluation for the fall meeting, please do so now. Your input is taken very seriously and helps us to shape future meetings – based upon your suggestions and ideas.

VISION JOURNEYS…Last week we asked State Directors to share their implementation stories on the vision for career technical education (CTE), lending their own voices, with the intent that by sharing with other State Directors and Leaders, everyone can use these ideas to develop strategies that will prove useful in their own states.

Here is our first submission, by Kathy Shibley of Ohio: 

“I found the “S” curve discussion by Langdon Morris of InnovationLabs to be very interesting, especially as it relates to Ohio’s approach to the CTE vision. We consider Ohio’s Perkins IV Plan to be quite bold for secondary schools: Tech Prep for all – all programs and all students. To us this meant that all programs would adopt our most rigorous content standards and highest quality program standards. It also meant that the “best of the best” approach to programming would not be reserved for only students selected into the secondary programs. It would be for all students and it would be up to us to build in more supports to help students to be successful in rigorous programs.

 In the beginning, the response from some secondary schools to this goal in our Perkins Plan was skeptical at best, if not resistive. But more quickly than I would have predicted, they have accepted the vision and readily put it forth as Ohio’s objective, although they are also quick to describe their fears and uncertainty about how to ensure student success.

 Now that we are at the mid-point of Perkins IV and the difficulty of the task is well-known,  I have been concerned that schools will give up on it, lose some of their enthusiasm and motivation to meet the challenge and start looking for a “next flavor of the month.” What I think is happening instead in Ohio is that the CTE vision is becoming the jumping-off point for us. As our Perkins Plan goals are reaching their peak as an innovative and exciting endeavor and are becoming just old-fashioned hard work, the national CTE vision provides a new side-by-side, congruent  “S” curve that we can jump off to and start a new upward cycle. By promoting the CTE vision as a detailed articulation of what CTE is about and having it be so clearly aligned with our Perkins Plan objectives, it has given our schools additional rationale for work we have already started as well as an emotional boost knowing they are part of a national vision for CTE.” 

Kathy Shibley can be reached at Thank you for your contribution!

We eagerly await other states’ submissions. They can be sent to Ramona Schescke at

Home Builders Institute Shares Certification Protocols for Instructors and Students at NASDCTEc Fall Meeting

October 26th, 2010

Today’s Fall Meeting Sponsor is the Home Builders Institute, who has exciting news about certifications for our members and attendees.

The Home Builders Institute (HBI) is excited about its certification protocols for instructors and students. HBI has partnered with The Ohio State University for the instructor online certification course and with the National Occupational Competency Testing Institute (NOCTI) for student certification through online testing.

Instructor Certification: HBI offers instructor industry certification to ensure consistency in instructor teaching/training methodologies and knowledge competency when teaching to the NAHB skill standards contained throughout the Residential Construction Academy Series curriculum.

Student Certification: Student certification will be administered through NOCTI in specific trade areas. All tests are based on industry standards as are the materials contained in the Residential Construction Academy Series. Certification is available for secondary, postsecondary and industry levels. Testing is offered at three proficiency levels, entry, semi-skilled and skilled.

For more information, contact C. Deanna Lewis, who is at the fall meeting. Please stop by her display table too!

Deanna is the Director for Career & Certification Services certification.


Adobe CTE Solutions Provide Essential Skills for College, Career, or Both

October 25th, 2010

Greetings CTE Friends,

The NASDCTEc fall meeting is upon us and we wish to highlight sponsors who are supporting our meeting. Today we would like to recognize Adobe Systems, Inc.

Adobe CTE Solutions provide essential skills for college, career, or both

Industry-standard design and media products are the most obvious components of a complete CTE solution for K–12. But Adobe’s world-class creative tools are complemented and supported by associate and expert level certifications, project-based curriculum guides, professional development and affordable licensing . Ideally suited for maximizing education funding, Adobe solutions for career and technical education are designed to prepare students with fundamental digital communication skills and the practical experience they need to thrive in the global workforce.

Whether students are learning skills in the context of graphic design, web design and development, or film and video design and production, Adobe software provides the same integrated workflow capabilities used by today’s working professionals. In addition to gaining the necessary technical know-how, students learn how to collaborate on projects, solve problems, manage their time and even interact with real-world clients. The result: They develop the full range of proficiencies, attitudes and skills required for on-the-job success.

Adobe is proud to be a platinum sponsor of the Fall 2010 meeting here in Baltimore.  Please see our Adobe representatives Paul Faust, Ron Richard and Lisa Deakes to learn more about Adobe’s commitment to preparing students for the workforce and higher education. And make sure to ask about our Creative Suite 5 site license promotion for your districts.

See you at the fall meeting!

Linked Learning Approach Attempts to Renew Curriculum

August 20th, 2010

The state of California is leading the charge to provide relevant learning and ensure that their CTE students are college and career ready. The Alliance for Excellent Education hosted an event, “Building the Capacity of Teachers to Prepare Students for College and Careers,” to highlight The Linked Learning Approach which has been adopted in the state of California as a way for teachers to increase student engagement.

One example highlighted during this presentation was the school of Digital Media and Design (DMD) at the Kearny High Education Complex. DMD adopted the Linked Learning Approach two years ago when the school was ranked in the bottom 20 percent of California schools. Since implementing this model, DMD has been ranked in the top 25 percent of schools.

The Linked Learning Approach incorporates project and inquiry-based curriculums where students are given semester long projects to complete with a team. At the end of each semester students present their final project to a panel of business and industry representatives. In order to ensure that projects provide relevant learning for all students, instructors work together to align course materials that allow students to make connections across all subjects.

Panelists all echoed the importance of quality professional development programs to ensure the best education for America’s youth.

Agenda for the 2010 NASDCTEc Fall Meeting Shares Program Details

August 9th, 2010

We hope you can join us for the NASDCTEc Fall meeting  – Leading to Transform: Taking Us to Where We Should Be-scheduled for October 25 – 27, 2010 at the Westin BWI Baltimore Airport Hotel.

The implementation of Reflect, Transform, Lead: A Vision for the Future of Career Technical Education will require change in the way we do business. As leaders, how do you lead this change and create an environment focused on innovation?   Please be sure to check out the just-posted, comprehensive agenda that details speakers, workshop goals, etc.

We hope you can join us for this premier professional development event!  

For more information and to register, plesae visit .