Career Clusters â„¢ Institute Series: Increases in U.S. Technical Competence

This blog series provides readers with insight on the valuable content that will be shared at the upcoming Career Clusters ™ Institute. Guest bloggers are among teachers, faculty, researchers and other experts that will present at the national gathering in Washington, DC in June. The session highlighted below is a pre-session, which is scheduled for Sunday, June 17, 2012, 1 p.m.–3 p.m. Pre-sessions charge a separate fee; you can add a pre-session to your general registration as you complete the registration form online.

Dr. John C. Foster is first and foremost a dedicated leader and advocate for individuals preparing for the workforce. He currently serves as the President/CEO of NOCTI and its sister company The Whitener Group. These organizations provide technical performance assessment for career and technical, secondary, and post-secondary programs in 48 of the 50 states. They also provide career and technical teacher occupational competency testing for universities delivering teacher training. Lastly, these firms provide assessment development, delivery, and reporting help for private industry and associations.

As professionals in the field of workforce training, specifically technical skills training, we get bombarded by information from multiple sources telling us how better to prepare our workforce. Some employers will tell us, “just give me someone who comes to work on time and we’ll do the rest,” others expect our public education system to turn out journeymen upon high school graduation. Other voices even tell us to give up on technical training and concentrate all our public education dollars on English, math and science.

To make matters worse, we are often told that the job we are doing just isn’t good enough and they claim that the federal legislation that funds our community is ineffective legislation. Even the U.S. Education Secretary has said that Career and Technical Education (CTE) is only good at providing “islands of excellence”, insinuating that the bulk of our programs need a lot of work!

In February of 2012 and then again in March, NOCTI presented longitudinal technical assessment data that indicates that as a nation our technical competence IS increasing. It indicates that the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act of 2006 IS having a positive effect, and it indicates that states are implementing instructional improvement programs based on real data from objective third-party evaluators!

The presentation will look at examples of national data, state data, and local data and the consistency of the patterns of improvement that our CTE community is making! CTE has a tremendous impact on our economy, our citizens, our educational system, our infrastructure, and our very way of life. Isn’t it about time you knew the truth?

Add this Pre-Session to your Institute experience now! If you have already registered for the National Career Clusters™ Institute, you can still sign up for Dr. Foster’s Pre-Session now. Call our office at 301-588-9630 for more information on how to sign up.

Ramona Schescke, Member Services Manager

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