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Career Clusters® Institute Blog Series: Teacher Training and Development – Preparing Today’s Students

June 4th, 2013

This blog series provides readers with insight on the valuable content that is being shared at the Career Clusters ® Institute. Guest bloggers are among teachers, faculty, researchers and other experts that will present at the national gathering in Fort Worth, TX in June. Today’s guest blogger is Dr. John Foster, President/CEO of NOCTI, Big Rapids, MI.

States have varying requirements for certification of Career and Technical Education (CTE) teachers who enter the system from alternative paths. In some states, these teachers fall into an “alternative certification” category.  Regardless of whether these individuals have received college-level coursework, they rarely have had extensive preparation to become a teacher, much less a CTE teacher.  Schools hiring these individuals to teach their programs require current industry experience and many times, the trade-off is an individual with limited preparation in teaching pedagogies.NOCTI--Navy-11-2009

There are many other topics that individuals who go through a traditional teacher certification track are exposed to, including student assessment which focuses on how to use assessments for instructional improvement.  As times have changed, there are additional alternative uses for assessments such as the more formal inclusion of assessments in states’ teacher evaluation models.  Assessments play a key role in each of these areas.

Thanks to a combination of universities, current needs, and NOCTI board members, modules have been developed providing research-based information about assessments.  Though module development was led by NOCTI, the majority of the content it is applicable to any third-party technical assessment.  These modules are available free of charge as a service to the CTE community we serve and focus on two areas:

1) Understanding CTE assessment/certification systems; and

2) Understanding and preparing for teacher and student level competency tests.

While our session is not intended to be a formal training in traditional teaching pedagogy, it will provide helpful information about important components of a classroom setting including assessments, psychometrics, and utilizing data within the classroom. With a high demand for high quality CTE teachers, providing resources for training these individuals to prepare tomorrow’s workforce is extremely important.

Our session will include a review of the developed CTE Teacher Modules and suggest module implementation ideas as part of a professional development workshop, an in-service for newly hired teachers and/or as a portion of a university course.  Stop by this session to learn some basics about assessment and take your skills to a new level!

Dr. Foster’s breakout session is Tuesday, June 11, 2013 in Session C, 8:45 a.m.-9:45 a.m. Co-presenter is Mrs. Amie Bloomfield, Customer Care and Outreach Manager, NOCTI, Big Rapids, MI.

Ramona Schescke, Member Services Manager

 

For more information, please go to www.nocti.org

Ramona Schescke, Member Services Manager

Career Clusters® Institute Blog Series: Data Mining to Improve Instruction: CTEDDI

June 3rd, 2013

This blog series provides readers with insight on the valuable content that is being shared at the Career Clusters ® Institute. Guest bloggers are among teachers, faculty, researchers and other experts that will present at the national gathering in Fort Worth, TX in June. Today’s guest blogger is Dr. Sandra Pritz, Senior Consultant, NOCTI.

Strategies to improve instruction are embedded in your students’ data if you know how to mine for them.  CTEDDI (Career Technical Educators using Data-Driven NOCTIInstruction) is a researched professional development mining tool, and the model can be implemented in various ways to meet needs at the state or local level.

Educators say they welcome evaluations of their practice and programs, but need more support in interpreting and using student assessment data to make their instruction more effective and help their students achieve at higher levels and meet their learning objectives. Increasingly, evaluations of schools, programs, and teachers are being tied to student achievement.

To help schools, teachers, and students excel, NRCCTE researchers at NOCTI spent three years researching, developing, and pilot testing CTEDDI—a professional development model that empowers CTE administrators and educators to use student assessment data to enrich classroom practice, capture student interest, effectively target individual and group learning needs, and meet student learning objectives (SLOs).

CTEDDIUnlike out-of-the-box, one-shot professional development, with CTEDDI:

  • Training is highly interactive and customized.
  • Professional development is a year-long process rather than a one-time event, with participants receiving ongoing support and mentoring.
  • Educators use their own students’ data to create classroom- and student-level instructional improvement plans.
  • Educators participate in an online collaborative community of practice with CTEDDI participants across the country.
  • Educators are assisted in making systematic and strategic instructional decisions that can result in higher student scores and teacher performance evaluations.

CTEDDI technical assistance is available at the secondary and postsecondary level for states, districts, and/or schools and can be customized to meet specific needs. Join educators in California, Maine, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, and Chicago who are currently participating in CTEDDI.                                   Data

Come and find out how the process model can be replicated using the action planning process as long as you have mined your data. At the session, small groups will mine ideas from sample technical skills data.

For more information, go to www.nocti.org

Dr. Pritz’s breakout session is Tuesday, June 11, 2013 in Session C, 8:45 a.m. – 9:45 a.m. and is described more fully on page 19 in the Institute program booklet.

NRCCTE

Ramona Schescke, Member Services Manager

Career Clusters® Institute Blog Series: College Credit for CTE Competency … Now Available

June 3rd, 2013

This blog series provides readers with insight on the valuable content that is being shared at the Career Clusters ® Institute. Guest bloggers are among teachers, faculty, researchers and other experts that will present at the national gathering in Fort Worth, TX in June. Today’s guest blogger is Dr. John C. Foster, CEO, NOCTI and NOCTI Business Solutions.NOCTI

Education is at a crossroad in many ways, and there are so many external influences on public education that it can make one’s head spin. The current focus on Career and College Readiness brings with it its own set of external influences which, in addition to the indirect influences on education in general, impact the Career Technical Education (CTE) community directly and more specifically.

Just a few examples of these impacts are big picture issues like teacher evaluations based on student outcome data, return on investment in technical training based on workplace success, researching, categorizing and assessing the value of industry certification systems and, of course, Perkins IV reauthorization. In relation to assessment in the CTE community, we have other layers of impacts including implementation of Programs of Study (POS), the use of data for instructional improvement, articulation agreement foundations, dual credit, and inconsistency of rigor of CTE programs in similar technical areas.

CCRS

In our session we will briefly explore some of these issues with a focus purposely on solutions that exist for several of them. Specifically, we will focus on collaboration with the National College Credit Recommendation Service (NCCRS), a program of the USNY Regents Research Fund; NCCRS has conducted an academic evaluation showing competence on technical assessments delivered by NOCTI. Over 1500 colleges and universities may consider awarding college credit for NOCTI assessments based on NCCRS credit recommendations.

The presentation will explore the first year of implementation of this innovative approach, what we learned, and how we improved our process and product for the second year. This whole process underscores the rigor of CTE programs and highlights the commitment of non-profits like NOCTI and NCCRS to see that CTE programs have the data they need to prove their success. If time permits we will also discuss the concept of how badges fit into the equation. Please join us for an informative and innovative session!

For more information go to www.nocti.org and www.nationalccrs.org

Dr. Foster’s breakout session (identified as a vendor session) is Tuesday, June 11, 2013 in Session D, 11:15 a.m. – 12:10 p.m. and described on page 25 in the Institute program booklet. Co-presenter is Ms. Tina Grant, Director, National College Credit Recommendation Service, Albany, NY.

Ramona Schescke, Member Services Manager

Career Clusters® Institute Blog Series: Business – Industry Certification (BIC): CTE Programs that Provide 21st Century Skills

May 30th, 2013

This blog series provides readers with insight on the valuable content that is being shared at the Career Clusters ® Institute. Guest bloggers are among teachers, faculty, researchers and other experts that will present at the national gathering in Fort Worth, TX in June. Today’s guest blogger is Randy Swann, Education Administrator, Alabama State Department of Education.

The Alabama State Department of Education, Office of Career and Technical Education/Workforce Development partnered with business and industry to develop a certification process that establishes and maintains a quality-oriented accountability system for the improvement and enhancement of Career Technical Education (CTE). All CTE programs must participate in an annual local evaluation for business/industry certification (BIC). BIC promotes program improvement that enhances the preparedness of Alabama’s students for society and tomorrow’s workforce. AL

Alabama requires all CTE programs to certify to industry standards, either through the state’s BIC process or through a national certification process. The BIC process is certified to standards as developed by the International Organization for Standardization (“ISO”) and these standards are referred to as ISO 9001:2000 certification.

The ISO 9001:2000 certification is process-based and recognizes organizations that link business objectives with operating effectiveness. ISO indicates that CTE demonstrates effective implementation of BIC documentation and records management; has the commitment of top management to local career and technical programs; has established clear policies; conducts good planning and implementation; performs good resource management; and has efficient process control, measurement, and analysis. The ISO certification ensures that the BIC process is quality-oriented, consistently administered, and focused on customer satisfaction. The purpose of BIC is to ensure that CTE programs meet industry standards so that students will be equipped for postsecondary education, apprenticeship, employment, and life.

For more information, please go to Alabama’s Department of Education Web site.

Randy’s breakout session is Tuesday, June 11, 2013 in Session E, 1:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

Ramona Schescke, Member Services Manager

Career Clusters® Institute Blog Series: Reviewing and Using Eight Key Indicators of Rigorous Career Technical Education to Improve Programs of Study

May 23rd, 2013

This blog series provides readers with insight on the valuable content that is being shared at the Career Clusters ® Institute. Guest bloggers are among teachers, faculty, researchers and other experts that will present at the national gathering in Fort Worth, TX in June. Today’s guest blogger is Scott Warren, Director of State Initiatives, Southern Regional Education Board (SREB)-High Schools that Work. The SREB is located in Atlanta, GA.

Who says rigorous CTE is not key to improving student achievement?  Consider these figures: 17 percent more students meeting college and career readiness goals in reading and science and 13 percent more meeting college and career readiness goals in mathematics.  Where did these percentages come from, you ask?   When High Schools That Work analyzed data from its 2012 national assessment of seniors we found when students had classroom experiences in their CT classrooms they were much more likely to meet college and career readiness standards.  This was true even when the students all took the same academic classes! HSTW_Red_Logo.jpg.tn

High Schools That Work compared two groups of students from the 2012 assessment. The first group included students who experienced more than four of the eight indicators for a rigorous CT course.  We then took a similar group in terms of ethnicity, socio-economic and gender who experienced less than four of these indicators.  The results were staggering.  Even when students took the “right” academic classes, rigorous CT resulted in a significant increase in achievement.  For reading, 63 percent of the students who took a college preparatory academic core but did not experience rigorous CT met college and career readiness goals. However, 80 percent of the students who took that same academic core and had rigorous CT met college and career readiness goals – a 17 percent increase! Similar data holds true for science and mathematics.

In this breakout session on Monday afternoon, participants will learn more about these eight critical CT classroom experiences that make a difference.  Participants will also learn a simple strategy to engage teachers in taking ownership of them by developing tools for leaders to use to look for them in classrooms.

Scott’s breakout is Monday, June 10, 2013 in session B: 3:45 p.m. – 5 p.m. 

More information about the National Career Clusters® Institute

Ramona Schescke, Member Services Manager

Career Clusters® Institute Blog Series: FREE Resources for Education and Training, Hospitality and Tourism, and Human Services Cluster Teachers!

May 23rd, 2013

This blog series provides readers with insight on the valuable content that is being shared at the Career Clusters ® Institute. Guest bloggers are among teachers, faculty, researchers and other experts that will present at the national gathering in Fort Worth, TX in June. Today’s guest blogger is Sandra Ann Delgado, CTE Associate Project Director, Statewide Instructional Resources Development Center, Austin, TX.SFA

Greetings from Texas and the STATEWIDE INSTRUCTIONAL RESOURCES DEVELOPMENT CENTER (SIRDC)!  Our team is looking forward to presenting our breakout session at The National Career Clusters® Institute. I can’t wait to share our FREE instructional resources with you. Yes, FREE, no username or password required.

I’ll begin with a little history, but I’ll make it brief because I want to provide you with the opportunity to review our resources before you attend the session! SIRDC is a Texas Education Agency Perkins state leadership grant-funded project that has been awarded to Stephen F. Austin State University. Our current grant team has been in place since June 2011. The purpose of this project is to provide free instructional resources for Texas instructors teaching courses in the following career clusters:

  • Education and Training
  • Hospitality and Tourism
  • Human Services

We service 25 courses within these three clusters and currently have over 180 instructional lessons published on our website http://cte.sfasu.edu/ (additional lessons published monthly). In addition to the basic components, each lesson includes suggestions for special needs and ELL students, connections to core subject matter, reading and writing strategies, CTSO and service learning ideas, and much more.

Other services we provide include 13 FREE teacher online courses, see http://cte.sfasu.edu/course/lifetime-nutrition-and-wellness/, links to additional cluster/course resources, see http://cte.sfasu.edu/rgroup/instructional-practices-in-education/and a monthly newsletter, see http://cte.sfasu.edu/c/newsletters/.

logoTEAIf you have any questions, comments or suggestions, feel free to contact me. We look forward to meeting you on June 12th!

Sandra’s breakout session is June 12, 2013 in session G, 8:30 a.m. – 9:45 a.m. . Her co-presenters are Diane Salazar, Statewide CTE Coordinator, Texas Education Agency, Austin,  TX and Lynda Martin, Director, School of Human Sciences, Stephen F. Austin State University, and SFA Grant Program Investigator, Nacogdoches, TX.

More about the National Career Clusters® Institute

Ramona Schescke, Member Services Manager

 

Career Clusters® Institute Blog Series: Making your CTE Curriculum Accessible to All Special Populations

May 22nd, 2013

This blog series provides readers with insight on the valuable content that is being shared at the Career Clusters ® Institute. Guest bloggers are among teachers, faculty, researchers and other experts that will present at the national gathering in Fort Worth, TX in June. Today’s guest blogger is Lakshmi Mahadevan, Assistant Professor, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, College Station, TX.

Why UDL?Lakshmi

Career and Technical Education instructors are most commonly asked to educate many diverse student populations. Although teaching students with such broad ranges of skills, talents, and interests presents challenges for CTE educators, the nature of CTE programs of study fortunately makes them particularly amenable to the Universal Design for Learning (UDL) approach.

In this session, CTE instructors will be introduced to the UDL principles of multiple means of engagement, representation and action/expression that can be effectively utilized within their classrooms so that all their students, including special populations, can be taught the necessary skills and academic content.

What is UDL?

In general, UDL principles call for the curriculum to be presented in multiple modalities, and students are allowed to demonstrate their learning through a variety of formats. Specifically, a universally designed curriculum overcomes limitations by incorporating three principles of flexibility into its design.

Principle I

The first principle is multiple methods of presentation. UDL courses provide alternative representations of essential concepts, which allow students to learn the information in their preferred means. Examples of alternatives include placing course materials on the Web, allowing students to tape record, using videos, podcasts, and other multimedia.

Principle II

The second principle is using multiple options for participation and engagement. By having flexible teaching strategies and course content, students can choose methods that support their interests and skill levels. For example, assignments and course content may be tied to a current news topic or world event, which allows the instructor to tap into the students’ own interests.

Principle III

The last principle is multiple means of expression. The instructor can let students choose a format through which they demonstrate their knowledge of a subject (for example, doing an oral presentation, a written paper, or taking a test). Allowing choices leads students to multiple opportunities and means of demonstrating mastery of the required material.

What will I get if I attend?SpecialPop

Participants attending this presentation will view videos of CTE instructors incorporating UDL principles into their teaching. In addition, attendees will have an opportunity to access UDL tools for self-assessments, ask questions, and discuss UDL-related best practices with colleagues through a group activity.

Other information (URLs, etc.): For further information about this and other CTE and special populations-related topics, go to: http://ctsp.tamu.edu.

Dr. Mahadevan’s session, Making Your CTE Curriculum Accessible to All Special Populations, will be held Tuesday, June 11, during Session C, 8:45 a.m. – 9:45 a.m. Co-presenter is Dr. Rick Peterson, Associate Professor, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, College Station, TX.

More information about the Career Clusters® Institute

Ramona Schescke, Member Services Manager

Career Clusters® Institute Blog Series: All on Board the Engine Driving Wisconsin’s Career Pathways Initiative

May 22nd, 2013

This blog series provides readers with insight on the valuable content that is being shared at the Career Clusters ® Institute. Guest bloggers are among teachers, faculty, researchers and other experts that will present at the national gathering in Fort Worth, TX in June. Today’s guest blogger is Marge Rubin, College & Career Pathways Project Coordinator of the Wisconsin Career Pathways Website Project at Fox Valley Technical College, Appleton, WI.CP_Orange_Web

With over 420 school districts in Wisconsin, each governed by a separate school board, how does a state get everyone involved in moving forward with developing Programs of Study?  By building a dynamic, data-driven Web site at www.WICareerPathways.org!  The site integrates development of secondary-to-postsecondary Programs of Study with students’ Plans of Study within Wisconsin’s Career Clusters’® framework.  Supported by the Wisconsin Technical College System through Perkins funding, a large inclusive cross-functional project team kicked off this initiative in 2008 and came up with a multi-phased plan.  Fox Valley Technical College took the lead on behalf of all 16 technical colleges to design and develop the Web site.

Our first step included arranging occupations and postsecondary programs by clusters and pathways.  Each cluster has its own webpage containing a brief description and links to the pathways within the cluster. Each pathway is presented on a separate webpage.  We created a web-based interactive tool that moves developers through a step-by-step process to create a visual depiction of a Program of Study.  Users can also access Wisconsin’s program-of study implementation guide and search and view a repository of published programs of study.

During the second phase, a site to help middle and high school students explore colleges and careers was developed.  By setting up an account at www.WICareerPathways/Students, students are driven to the Student Interest Survey for Career Clusters®.  After completing the survey, students land in a secure portal called MiLocker where a customized summary named MiClusters lists the 16 Career Clusters® in rank order based on survey results.  From the MiClusters listing, students can explore the 16 Career Clusters® and drill down into career pathways.  From the career pathways webpages, students can explore

  • Majors/programs of Wisconsin’s higher education sectors
  • An ample amount of specific career information
  • Programs of study from their high schools

With one easy click, students can turn a Program of Study created by their high school into their personal Plan of Study, which they can edit to reflect their personal path and save in MiLocker.  School counselors can guide students as they use the student site, assist in creating an online Plan of Study, and share the student site during student/parent conferences.

During the third phase, we turned our attention to the needs of middle and high school counselors.  Counselors can log in to a secure portal to access school-wide and individual student Web site activity.  The best-ever feature is that counselors can view what students have in their MiLocker profile, including Plans of Study.

The advantage of a web-based resource is that it allows for ongoing development.  What’s next?  We are expanding the site to include features for business and industry to connect with students.  Stay tuned!

Marge Rubin’s breakout session, All on Board the Engine Driving Wisconsin’s Career Pathways Initiative!, will be held Wednesday, June 12 from 8:30 a.m. – 9:45 a.m. Rubin’s co-presenters are Jennifer Wagner, K-12 Relations Manager, Moraine Park Technical College, Fond du Lac, WI, and Jay Stulo, Director-Learning Innovations & Technology, Appleton, WI.

More about the Career Clusters® Institute

Ramona Schescke, Member Services Manager

Career Clusters® Institute Blog Series: Building Strategic Alliances with Business/Industry, Workforce Development, and Economic Development

May 14th, 2013

This blog series provides readers with insight on the valuable content that is being shared at the National Career Clusters® Institute. Guest bloggers are among teachers, faculty, researchers, and other experts that will present at the national gathering in Fort Worth, TX in June. Today’s guest blogger is Gregg Christensen, Entrepreneurship and Career Education Specialist, Nebraska Department of Education, Lincoln, NE.

Building Strategic Alliances with Business/Industry, Workforce Development, and Economic Development

NCEHeader2

Nebraska Career Education
SYSTEM

Business-Industry Linkages…

Partnering with Workforce Development and Economic Development

Stakeholder Involvement…

Do all these sound like familiar themes related to Career Technical Education?  It’s easy to give lip service to them, but difficult to make a reality in effective and efficient ways.

Bringing together key partners to achieve buy-in, support and advocacy for important career technical education initiatives and projects has never been more crucial. The bottom line for many business and industry professionals is that they feel called upon for money, equipment, and advice, but not really “heard.”

Workforce Development and Economic Development agencies have different missions, different measures of success, and different “alphabet soups” of programs and initiatives.  Bridging that divide is difficult but doable.

Engagement of key stakeholders has to be more than a surface “bring ‘em in, talk at ‘em and let ‘em go” exercise to meet a state or federal requirement.  Identifying who needs to be at the table, why they would want to be there, and what they (and you) will gain from working together is crucial, but an often overlooked step.

This session will share best practices for building strategic alliances with diverse group and review examples of strategic alliances built by the Nebraska Career Education (NCE) team and explore the tangible outcomes of these NCE system-driven collaborations including:

  • Nebraska Standards for Career Ready Practice
  • Career Readiness Modules
  • Professional Development Modules
  • H3 Website
  • Preparation for Tomorrow Food and Nutritional Sciences project

Gregg’s breakout session, Building Strategic Alliances with Business/Industry, Workforce Development, and Economic Development is Monday, June 10 from 3:35 p.m. - 5 p.m.

Ramona Schescke, Member Services Manager

Career Clusters® Institute Blog Series: Exposing and Engaging Students in Careers

May 13th, 2013

This blog series provides readers with insight on the valuable content that is being shared at the National Career Clusters® Institute. Guest bloggers are among teachers, faculty, researchers, and other experts that will present at the national gathering in Fort Worth, TX in June. Today’s guest blogger is Terry Carlile, Director, TLC Workforce Solutions.

How are you preparing students in the competitive job market? Whose pipeline are we filing? Gaining the effective partnerships of local employers for workforce exposure and training remains the key attribute of successful career programs. Learn how youth’s career interest assessment and the local high demand career outlook was meshed together to provide a training platform.40117489_scaled_137x189

How to partner with workforce, educators and businesses for win-win-win scenarios will be the highlight of this subject. I’ve worked in the trenches of at-risk youth workforce programs and will share the reality of “how to”. It’ll be a fast, fun, informative and practical 1 hour and 25 minute excursion.

Resource:   www.tlcworkforcesolutions.com

Terry Carlile’s breakout session, Exposing and Engaging Students in Careers, will be held Wednesday, June 12 from 8:30 a.m. – 9:55 a.m.

 Ramona Schescke, Member Services Manager

 

 

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