Archive for September, 2011

Five New Jersey Career Technical Education Schools Rank in U.S. News & World Report Best High Schools for Math and Science

Friday, September 30th, 2011

Five Career Technical Education (CTE) schools in New Jersey ranked in U.S. News & World Report’s first-issued Best High Schools for Math and Science, including the no. 1 spot on the high-profile list.

CTE programs, which focus on delivering educational experiences that ready students with the academic and career skills for the real world, appear to have a formula needed to better poise students for high-demand jobs related to math and science. The recent ranking made by these five CTE schools shine a light on education strategies that have significant potential to prime individuals to be successful in the global economy.

The top-performing math and science school is High Technology High School in Lincroft, N.J., with 283 students. Enrollment is highly competitive, with some 300 applicants a year for 60 available spots, according to U.S. News & World Report. The other New Jersey schools ranked as follows.

To qualify for the Math and Science ranking, a school first had to be listed as either Gold, Silver, or Honorable Mention in the U.S. News Best High Schools rankings published in December 2009. That meant 598 high schools were eligible to be ranked using data from 2008 graduates. The methodology for selection is explained online.

Erin Uy, Communications and Marketing Manager

By Erin in News
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NASDCTEc Webinar on the Green Education Pilot Curriculum Project (Broadcast September 27) PowerPoint and Recording Resources

Friday, September 30th, 2011

The two new Green Education Foundation’s pilot offerings for Career Technical Education schools, including the Green Building Course and the new professional development course for K-12 faculty entitled Sustainability Education Concepts and Teaching Methods were shared at a recent webinar broadcast. For those who were unable to attend this broadcast, the resources include the following:

Broadcast Recording


These resources, along with other webinar broadcast resources from earlier NASDCTEc webinars, are readily available on our website.

Ramona Schescke, Member Services Manager

By Ramona in Webinars
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Legislative Update: House Appropriations, Community College Grants, ESEA Markup

Friday, September 30th, 2011

House Labor-HHS-Education Funding Bill Released

As we told you this morning, the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services and Education released a draft of their FY12 appropriations bill. The bill provides for $153.4 billion in discretionary spending, which is $4 billion below FY11 enacted levels. However, this is a much smaller cut than the $18 billion proposed in Budget Chairman Paul Ryan’s (WI) FY12 budget plan.

Perkins Act funding was maintained in the House’s current proposal, but not all education and workforce programs fared as well. The bill eliminates 31 programs from the Department of Education, including the Elementary and Secondary Counseling Act, High School Graduation Initiative, Race to the Top, Investing in Innovation grants, and FIPSE. The Pell grant maximum award was maintained at $5,550, but eligibility was eliminated for less-than–half-time students and the proposal would reduce the semesters that a student can receive the grant from 18 to 12.

Programs within the Department of Labor saw significant cuts, including:

The bill is not scheduled to be marked up by the Appropriations Committee, but these funding levels will likely be part of a House omnibus bill.

TAA Community College Grants Awarded

Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis and Under Secretary of Education Martha Kanter announced $500 million in Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training (TAACCCT) grants to 32 community colleges this week. The grants will be used for targeted training and workforce development to help dislocated workers obtain the skills they need to change careers. The grants support partnerships between community colleges and employers to develop programs that provide career pathways and build instructional programs that meet industry needs. Congress allocated $2 billion for the TAACCCT program to be awarded in each of fiscal years 2011-2014.  A list of grantees can be found here.

Senate ESEA Markup Scheduled

Senator Tom Harkin (IA), chair of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee, announced that they will markup an Elementary and Secondary Education Act bill on October 18. In a statement, Harkin said “This reauthorization is now more than four years overdue, and our students, schools, and communities cannot afford to wait any longer.” Draft language has not yet been released, but we will keep you posted on any further developments.

Nancy Conneely, Public Policy Manager


By Nancy in Legislation
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Perkins Funding Maintained in House Proposal

Friday, September 30th, 2011

The House Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations Subcommittee released its FY12 bill yesterday. In it, the House proposes to maintain Perkins funding. Given the House’s stated goal of reducing federal spending, this is a tremendous victory for Perkins and CTE!

As we reported last week, the Senate also proposed level funding for Perkins in their appropriations bill, so there is a good chance that the final bill will reflect this consensus. However, this is not guaranteed, and we must continue to fight for CTE funding. I encourage you to call your Members of Congress and thank them for preserving Perkins funding in their respective draft bills, but also ask them to keep  Perkins level funded in the final bill.

I also encourage you to ask your business and industry partners to show their support for CTE funding by signing onto a business letter that we, along with ACTE, AACC, CCSSO and AASA, are planning to send up to Congress in October. If you have businesses in your state that want to sign on, please have them email me at

Nancy Conneely, Public Policy Manager

By Nancy in Legislation
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Call for Presenters NOW OPEN for The 2012 National Career Clustersâ„¢ Institute

Thursday, September 29th, 2011

The 2012 Career Clustersâ„¢ Institute Call for Presenters is now open!
The Institute is June 18-20, 2012 in Washington, DC at the Omni Shoreham Hotel.

The Call for Presentations for the 2012 Career Clustersâ„¢ Institute is Now Open. You are cordially invited to submit a proposal. The purpose of the Institute is to provide a venue for sharing of effective practices, ideas, and research. Ultimately, the goal is to increase student success and ensure our nation’s economic growth and security. Therefore, Institute sessions should promote the use of Career Clustersâ„¢ to drive collaboration and innovation in state and local education and workforce systems.

The 2012 Institute theme is Setting a New Standard and the program will be organized into five primary strands. Share your experiences and successes to inform participants with specific how-to, replicable advice that goes beyond awareness of Career Clustersâ„¢ to specific implementation strategies.

Benefits for approved breakout sessions:
• Reduced registration at the conference for up to 3 presenters/breakout
• Opportunity to collaborate with colleagues from around the country
• Share practices and experiences to increase engagement and opportunity with others
• Professional development
• Highlight/showcase your topic, providing visibility at the national level

Strand Descriptions

Strand A: CTE is critical to ensuring that the United States leads in global competitiveness.
Sessions in this strand will share examples (state, local and regional) of leaders in education (secondary and postsecondary), workforce development, economic development and/or business work together to increase U.S. investment in CTE, updates on the creation of a common career technical core, built upon the National Career Clustersâ„¢ Knowledge and Skill Statements, and other policy focused best practices advancing efforts in secondary and postsecondary education systems.

Key areas of strand focus:
• State Policy Development and Implementation
• Federal Policy Implementation
• Marketing and Communication Strategies Approaches

Strand B: CTE actively partners with employers to design and provide high-quality, dynamic programs.
Sessions in this strand will share examples (state, local and regional) where leaders in education (secondary and postsecondary), workforce development, economic development and/or business work together for shared interests and goals using Career Clustersâ„¢ as the unifying model/approach.

Key areas of strand focus:
• Examples of Collaboration
• Workforce Development
• Economic Development
• Partnership Development
• Using data to inform program decisions
• Professional Development Strategies
• Industry trends

Strand C: CTE prepares students to succeed in further education and careers.
Sessions in this strand are targeted for leaders at the state, district and local levels in secondary and postsecondary settings. Sessions will provide practical advice, examples and resources to support College and Career Readiness and to expand/enrich current implementation of Career Clustersâ„¢. Session may include a focus on how Career Clustersâ„¢ align initiatives and improvement efforts, the impact of Career Clustersâ„¢ on curriculum, guidance and/or community engagement activities in the school.

Key areas of strand focus:
• School and Career Counseling Approaches
• Career Development and Exploration Resources
• Integrating Educational Subjects (e.g., Math and CTE, etc.)
• Common Core State Standard Integration
• Reducing Remediation and Improving Transition

Strand D: CTE is delivered through comprehensive programs of study aligned to the National Career Clustersâ„¢ framework.
Sessions in this strand will share examples of the impact Career Clusters’™ innovative teaching and learning strategies can have in shaping programs of study and career technical education efforts in secondary schools and postsecondary systems. Strategies also may include delivery and innovative implementation approaches around specific Career Cluster™ areas.

Key areas of strand focus:
• Career Clusters™ Implementation
• Teaching and Learning Innovations and Strategies
• Use of Standards, Knowledge and Skills, Competencies
• Programs of Study Development/Refinement
• CTE Delivery Systems and approaches (including Career Academies, Model Schools, and other approaches)

Strand E: CTE is a results-driven system that demonstrates a positive return on investment.
Sessions in this strand will share examples (state, local, and regional) that exhibit high quality, successful, scalable CTE practices, share models that demonstrate CTE’s positive fiscal, societal, and economic impact, and show how data (secondary and postsecondary) is successfully used (state, local and regional) to support CTE accountability measures.

Key areas of strand focus:
• Accountability and Evaluation
• Technical Skill Assessments
• Research based Approaches and Studies
• Return on Investment Approaches

Complete the Call for Presentation information form online today!
More information about the Institute

Questions? Call our office at 301-588-9630.

Ramona Schescke, Member Services Manager

By Ramona in Uncategorized

Highlights from NBC’s “Education Nation” Summit

Thursday, September 29th, 2011

NBC News held its second annual Education Nation summit this week to engage the public in a conversation about our country’s public education system. The event featured interviews and panels with teachers, Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, and many other education experts.

One notable panel featured a representative from a Career Technical Education (CTE) postsecondary institute, Dr. Edward Hughes, alongside the presidents of Harvard University and the University of Texas system, as well as former Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings.

Hughes, founding president and chief executive officer of Kentucky’s Gateway Community and Technical College, spoke of the successful apprenticeship programs used by his college to meet the labor market demands of the community, particularly in the advanced manufacturing field. Hughes remarked that about 90 percent of Gateway’s students also work, making partnerships with employers vital to the retooling of employees.

View select presentations and summaries of each session on the Education Nation website.

Kara Herbertson, Education Policy Analyst

By Kara in News, Resources

Low College Completion Rates for Students Pursuing Certificate, Associate, and Bachelor’s Degrees

Thursday, September 29th, 2011

Despite increases in college enrollment rates, too few students are making it through certificate, associate and bachelor’s degree programs to attain a credential, according to a report released this week.

Complete College America (CCA), a national non-profit organization working to increase the number of Americans with a college degree or credential, presents new comprehensive state and campus college completion data in Time is the Enemy.

The federal government only requires colleges and universities to report data on first-time, full-time students. However, 40 percent of public college students attend part-time and, therefore, are often overlooked in federal data. Others have been overlooked as well, according to the report:

“Start full-time and then transfer to a different institution? You haven’t been counted. Older students, students trapped in remediation, students pursuing valuable career certificates… all have been virtually invisible to policy makers, elected officials, and taxpayers.”

Unlike most federal data, the report’s data shows rates for part-time and full-time students and those pursuing a certificate, 2-year degree or 4-year degree. CCA analyzed this data with the cooperation of governors from 33 states. Unfortunately, these newly-available statistics are sobering:

In Texas, 79 percent of college-going students enter 2-year public colleges full-time or part-time. Of these students, only 2 percent graduate on time. After 4 years, only 7 percent total will graduate with a degree.

Many other states showed similarly discouraging results. To view your state’s results, click here.

The report states that “students who are poor, older or of color struggle the most to graduate.” Some barriers include remedial coursework and inconvenient scheduling.

Programs that yield high student completion rates are also highlighted, such as Tennessee’s Technology Centers and the City of New York’s Accelerated Study in Associate Programs. Strategies for increasing graduation rates, such as block scheduling and on-campus jobs for commuter students, are also described.

View the full report and helpful visuals on the Complete College America website.

Kara Herbertson, Education Policy Analyst

By Kara in News, Research, Resources
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Senate Passes Short-Term Funding Bill

Tuesday, September 27th, 2011

Last night the Senate voted to modify the continuing resolution (CR) passed by the House last week, removing additional funding for disaster relief. Because of the changes, the bill must now go back to the House for approval before the fiscal year ends on Friday. The House is in recess this week, but House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (VA) has said that the chamber would approve a one week CR by unanimous consent on Thursday. This bill would give Congress until October 4 to pass a longer CR that would fund the government until November 18.


By Nancy in Legislation
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NASDCTEc Webinar Today on “Investment in CTE” – Register Now!

Tuesday, September 27th, 2011

Please join us this afternoon, Tuesday, September 27th from 2:00 to 2:45 pm ET, for a webinar: “Investment in CTE Investment in CTE: Linkages to Greater Earnings, Higher Employability, and Positive Benefit-Cost Ratio.” The webinar will accompany the release of our final vision issue brief of the same title.

Register for today’s webinar here.

NASDCTEc’s Education Policy Analyst, Kara Herbertson, will frame the conversation by highlighting state and organization examples that aim to show the value of CTE and education to the community and the economy.

We are pleased to have Kevin Hollenbeck, Vice President and Senior Economist at the W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research, join us for this discussion on return on investment (ROI) and CTE.

Click here to view our new issue brief on this topic.

For more information, please contact Kara Herbertson at

By Kara in Publications, Webinars
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NASDCTEc Webinar Reminder: Green Education Foundation Pilot Curriculum Project; Green Building Course Pilot Curriculum Announced

Monday, September 26th, 2011

Don’t miss the webinar on the Green Education Foundation Pilot Curriculum Project, September 27, 2011 at 1 p.m. Eastern
Victoria Waters, GEF President, will be introducing two new GEF pilot offerings for CTE schools including their Green Building Course which is a one semester, environmental science elective that educates 11th and 12th grade students on green building attributes and benefits, and provides them with the educational resources necessary to understand, identify, and improve environmental inefficiencies within their own school buildings. Topics covered include: sustainable sites, energy sources and conservation, water efficiency and indoor environmental quality as related to building construction, operation and maintenance. The course utilizes a digital resource.
GEF will also be showcasing its brand new professional development course for K-12 faculty entitled Sustainability Education Concepts and Teaching Methods.

This webinar will be recorded. You do not need to pre-register for this webinar. Simply go to this Link about 5 minutes prior to the broadcast. The audio will be heard through your computer speakers. Enter as ‘guest’ and enter your first and last name.
For more information about the webinar content, please contact Dean Folkers at

Green Education Foundation Launches Green Building Course

Molly Hislop, LEED® Green Associate Director, GEF Programs encourages everyone to “Join us for a free Green Building Course–Green Education Foundation’s (GEF) new one-semester Green Building Course is launching pilot versions this fall for 20 schools nationwide. This environmental science elective educates 11/12th grade students on green building attributes and benefits, and provides them with the educational resources necessary to understand, identify, and improve environmental inefficiencies within their own school buildings. The pilot curriculum is currently free and includes six units/75 hours of classroom instruction and an accompanying virtual textbook housed in an online learning management system, as well as a robust audit questionnaire.

If you’re looking for professional development or academic credit, GEF has resources for you, too! Their Sustainability Education Concepts and Teaching Methods pilot course is set to launch on November 1. The 15-hour, online course provides the broad knowledge, skills, and impetus to proceed with curriculum implementation and sustainability initiatives in your classroom and the broader community. Major concepts include biodiversity, renewable energy sources, green technology, the Greenhouse Effect, and climate change in response to natural and man-made causes. Classroom sustainability curricula will be linked to course units by topic and grade. You still have time to register at no-charge* so check it out! (*a fee applies if you are seeking credit, payable to our partner university.)

The Sustainability Education course applies to CTE students, as well! Students will be able to earn credit through coursework and testing while getting hands-on practical experience auditing their school for energy use, water use, and other green building components. Stay tuned for more details!

These programs will build a strong foundation for a very successful National Green Week!”

Questions can be directed to Molly Hislop, LEED® Green Associate Director, GEF Programs at

Ramona Schescke, Member Services Manager

By Ramona in Webinars