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Legislative Update: Alternative Certification, Career Academies

Friday, July 27th, 2012

House Subcommittee Holds Hearing on Alternative Certification

The House Subcommittee on Early Childhood, Elementary, and Secondary Education held a hearing this week to examine alternative certification of teachers. The topic is a timely one given its connection to defining highly qualified teachers under the No Child Left Behind Act. In 2010, Congress passed legislation that allowed students enrolled in alternative certification programs to be considered “highly qualified teachers.” The House Labor-HHS-Education appropriations bill seeks to extend this definition for two more years.

There was general support for alternative routes to certification on both sides of the aisle during the hearing. Chairman of the subcommittee, Rep. Duncan Hunter (CA) had this to say:

Alternative certification routes help address teacher shortages in particular geographic areas and subject matter, as well as strengthen the overall quality of the teaching profession. While Republicans know there is no one-size-fits-all federal solution to help put more effective teachers in the classroom, supporting the availability and acceptance of alternative certification programs is one way the public and private sectors can join together to ensure more students have access to a quality education from an extraordinary educator.

Cynthia Brown, Vice President for Education Policy at the Center for American Progress, agreed that alternative certification programs hold a lot of promise, but that there need to be policies in place to ensure that they are “high quality, innovative, and effective,” which also holds true for traditional teacher preparation programs. She suggested that Congress focus on teacher effectiveness rather than alternative routes to certification.

More Details on Career Academies Proposal

Last week Secretary of Education Arne Duncan spoke at the National Academy Foundation’s NEXT Conference about the President’s FY13 budget proposal to invest $1 billion in career academies. Funding at this level could increase the number of career academies by 3,000 and serve an additional 500,000 students.

According to Duncan, $200 million in grants to states would be available in FY13, and $400 million would be available in both FY14 and FY15. Grants to would total $4 million each to states, and would be given over a three year period. States would distribute those funds competitively to locals.

As part of the grant program, the Department of Education is proposing a definition of “career academy” that each state must use for the in-state competition:

  1. A career academy is a secondary school program as organized as a small learning com­munity or school within a school to provide the support of a personalized learning environment.
  2. The academy must begin in ninth grade and combine credit-bearing academic and techni­cal curriculum.
  3. The academy must organize curriculum around a career theme like those proposed by NAF — hospitality and tourism, IT, health, sci­ence, and engineering — and be aligned with states’ college- and career-ready standards.
  4. The academy must provide work-based learning and career exploration activities through partnerships with local employers.
  5. The academy must articulate entrance re­quirements of postsecondary education programs to ensure students graduate from high school ready to pursue a higher education degree or credential.

Nancy Conneely, Public Policy Manager

By Nancy in Public Policy
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NASDCTEc Unveils Common Standards for Career Technical Education

Tuesday, June 19th, 2012

Career Technical Education (CTE) State Directors unveiled the Common Career Technical Core (CCTC), a shared set of high-quality CTE standards. The CCTC is a state-led initiative to ensure that CTE programs are consistent and high-quality across our nation.

“Career Technical Education State Directors have put to action their vision for all CTE programs to meet consistent and rigorous standards by coordinating the development of the Common Career Technical Core,” said Dr. Patrick Ainsworth, President of the National Association of State Directors of Career Technical Education Consortium and CTE State Director.

“The CCTC, which was developed with input from education and industry experts, will help to ensure that our nation’s students are poised to meet the education and workforce demands of the global economy.”

States may voluntarily adopt the CCTC, which will complement and support other comprehensive college and career ready standards, such as the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) in English Language Arts and mathematics.

Over the course of the next year, NASDCTEc will launch an initiative to coordinate a comprehensive gap analysis to compare each state’s current course-level standards against the CCTC program-level standards to determine alignment. The gap analysis will be conducted by a team of third-party experts to ensure quality and consistency across the states.

DOWNLOAD the CCTC Standards here. 

Erin Uy, Communications & Marketing Manager

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

By Erin in Common Career Technical Core
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NASDCTEc Will Unveil the Common Standards for CTE at National Career Clusters™ Institute on June 19

Thursday, June 14th, 2012

The National Association of State Directors of Career Technical Education Consortium (NASDCTEc) will release the Common Career Technical Core (CCTC) — a set of rigorous, high-quality CTE standards to be shared by states– at the National Career Clusters ™ Institute  on June 19, 2012.

Forty-two states, Washington, DC and Palau participated in the development of the CCTC. The development of the CCTC was a multi-step process that incorporated input at various stages from approximately 3,500 individuals representing K-12 education, business and industry and higher education from across the nation.

Who:  National Association of State Directors of Career Technical Education Consortium

What: Common Career Technical Core Unveiling

Where:   National Career Clusters ™ Institute at the Omni Shore, located at 2500 Calvert Street NW,  Washington, DC 20008

When:  Tuesday, June 19, 8 a.m. – 9 a.m.

The Institute is an annual summer event that offers a range of seminars and workshops highlighting model CTE programs across the country that are aligned to the National Career Clusters Framework™.  More than 800 secondary and postsecondary educators and administrators, workforce development and industry partners, and counselors will attend. The NASDCTEc Spring Meeting, an event in which CTE State Directors from across the nation convene to discuss public policy issues, will run concurrently with the Institute.

Media interested in attending the Institute or scheduling an interview should contact Erin Uy at euy@careertech.org or 301-641-9358.

 

Erin Uy, Communications & Marketing Manager

By Erin in Common Career Technical Core, NASDCTEc Announcements, News
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CTE in the News: Standards Exist for Career and Technical Education

Wednesday, June 13th, 2012

Students deserve access to CTE programs that educate and train to high standards and industry demands, and now is the time to support the adoption of a next set of CTE standards that will allow for more opportunities for students and our nation, said Dean Folkers NASDCTEc/NCTEF Deputy Executive Director in a recent editorial featured in Education Week (available only to Education Week subscribers). The editorial is featured in Education Week’s June 13, 2012 print edition.

“I agree with U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, who said that the largest federal career and technical education, or CTE, program “must be transformed if it is to live up to its potential,” he said.

“State CTE directors across the nation are taking action. We have united around a vision and developed the Common Career Technical Core, a shared set of standards that meet a quality benchmark for CTE programs, which will be released June 19.”

Forty-two states, the District of Columbia, and Palau supported the development of the CCTC, which will help to answer our need for consistent, rigorous standards that are essential to preparing students for college and careers, he noted.

Learn more about the CCTC, which will be unveiled at the National Career Clusters ™ Institute June 19:

Erin Uy, Communications & Marketing Manager

 

By Erin in Common Career Technical Core
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NASDCTEc Collects More than 1,700 Reviews of Common CTE Standards, Moving Development Forward

Thursday, May 31st, 2012

More  than 1,700 reviews  of the Common Career Technical Core (CCTC), a shared set of rigorous, high-quality Career Technical Education (CTE) standards, were submitted during the recent public comment phase. Input on the CCTC was collected from a broad range of CTE stakeholders, including educators, administrators, and business and industry representatives.

“Career Technical Education (CTE) leaders believed it was critical to engage leading experts in the education, industry and technical fields to help develop and validate CTE standards that truly reflect the timely education and workforce needs of today’s global economy,“ Dr. Dean Folkers, Deputy Executive Director of the National Association of State Directors of Career Technical Education Consortium (NASDCTEc).

“The robust participation by a broad range of CTE stakeholders demonstrates the desire to develop standards that prepare our students for the future.”

NASDCTEc is coordinating the CCTC initiative. Forty-two states, Washington, DC and Palau participated in the development of the CCTC.

The development of the CCTC was a multi-step process that incorporated input at various stages from approximately 3,500 individuals representing K-12 education, business and industry and higher education from across the nation.  The public comment period ran from April 30 – May 11, 2012 and was an opportunity for CTE stakeholders to participate in the development of the CCTC.

The final standards are slated for public release at the National Career Clusters ™ Institute  on June 19, 2012. Click here and learn more about the CCTC online or visit www.careertech.org.

By Erin in Common Career Technical Core
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Eight More States Receive NCLB Waivers

Wednesday, May 30th, 2012

The U.S. Department of Education this week announced that eight additional states will receive waivers for No Child Left Behind (NCLB) requirements, so long as they implement college and career ready standards and reform their accountability systems. Waivers were given to Connecticut, Delaware, Louisiana, Maryland, New York, North Carolina, Ohio and Rhode Island. These states join 10 others – Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Jersey, Oklahoma, and Tennessee – in receiving a waiver. States receiving waivers no longer have to meet 2014 performance targets set by NCLB but must set new performance targets for improving student achievement and closing achievement gaps.

For more information, visit the Department’s waiver webpage.

Nancy Conneely, Public Policy Manager

 

By Nancy in Public Policy
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New District-Level Race to the Top Competition Announced

Tuesday, May 22nd, 2012

The U.S. Department of Education today announced the proposed criteria for a new district-level Race to the Top grant program. Like the original Race to the Top grants, the district-level completion will revolve around four reform areas: higher standards, data-driven decision making, greater support for teachers, and turning around low-performing schools. School districts may compete for a piece of the $400 million pot by showing how their plans for individualized classroom instruction will help close achievement gaps and prepare all students for college and career.

“With this competition, we are inviting districts to show us how they can personalize education for a set of students in their schools.  We need to take classroom learning beyond a one-size-fits-all model and bring it into the 21st century,” Secretary of Education Arne Duncan said.

School districts or groups of districts serving at least 2,500 students with 40 percent or more qualifying for free or reduced price lunch are eligible to apply. Awards will range from $15 million to $25 million, depending on the population of students served.

You may submit comments by June 8 on the district-level Race to the Top program here. The Department has stated that it plans to release the application in July, and that it will be due in October. Grant awards will be announced no later than Dec. 31, 2012.

Nancy Conneely, Public Policy Manager

 

By Nancy in Public Policy
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REMINDER: Final Week for Public Input on Common State Standards for CTE

Tuesday, May 8th, 2012

The National Association of State Directors of Career Technical Education Consortium (NASDCTEc) is seeking public input on the Common Career Technical Core (CCTC), a set of shared state standards for Career Technical Education (CTE) designed to help ensure all CTE students have access to high-quality, rigorous, career-focused learning opportunities in every state, and every community across the nation.

The public comment period ends this Friday, May 11, 2012. All CTE stakeholders, including educators, administrators, and industry are urged to provide input by using the CCTC Public Comment webpage at: <http://www.careertech.org/career-technical-education/cctc/publiccomment.html>. More detailed guidelines about submitting feedback, as well as direct links to each set of standards can be found on the webpage.

Additional details about the CCTC can be found online at: <http://www.careertech.org/career-technical-education/cctc/> or by emailing Dean Folkers, Deputy Executive Director at: dfolkers@careertech.org.

Erin Uy, Communications & Marketing Manager

By Erin in Common Career Technical Core
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NASDCTEc Seeks Input on Common Standards for Career Technical Education Programs

Tuesday, May 1st, 2012

The opportunity for the public to comment on the Common Career Technical Core (CCTC), a shared set of rigorous, high-quality Career Technical Education (CTE) standards developed and validated by education and industry experts begins today. The public comment period will run April 30 – May 11, 2012 and all CTE stakeholders, including educators, administrators, and industry are urged to participate in this process.

The public comment period is an opportunity for CTE stakeholders to participate in the development process of the CCTC, which is intended to help ensure all CTE students have access to high-quality, rigorous career-focused learning opportunities in every state, and every community across the nation. The CCTC will complement and support other comprehensive college and career ready standards, such as the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) in English Language Arts and Mathematics. The CCTC initiative is being facilitated by the National Association of State Directors of Career Technical Education Consortium (NASDCTEc).

Forty-two states have declared support for the development of the CCTC. Each of the 42 states; Washington, DC and Palau nominated experts from a range of sectors — from business and industry to education — to participate in working groups charged with the development of the CCTC in the spring of 2012.

Once the public comment period ends on May 11, 2012 the state-nominated working groups will review the public feedback and incorporate changes to the draft standards.  The final standards are slated for public release at the National Career Clusters ™ Institute  on June 19, 2012. Click here and learn more about the CCTC online or visit www.careertech.org.

 Erin Uy, Communications & Marketing Manager

By Erin in Common Career Technical Core, NASDCTEc Announcements
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Forty-One States and DC Declare Support for Development of Shared Set of CTE Standards

Monday, March 26th, 2012

NASDCTEc announced today that state leaders from across the nation are uniting to spearhead an initiative to develop a Common Career Technical Core (CCTC), a set of shared state standards for Career Technical Education (CTE).

NASDCTEc  is coordinating the state-led effort, which will complement and support comprehensive college and career ready standards, such as the Common Core State Standards Initiative (CCSI) in English Language Arts and Mathematics. The CCTC will build a common connection among states to help prepare CTE students for high-skill, high-wage, and high-demand jobs. Forty-one states; Washington, DC and Palau have signed a declaration of support for the CCTC initiative, pledging their involvement in the development stage.

A range of stakeholders from business and industry to educators will be involved in the multi-step process to develop the CCTC. The development of the standards will be led by working groups made up of state-nominated experts from a variety of sectors. Their involvement will help ensure that the CCTC reflects the timely education and workforce needs of today’s global economy.

The working groups convened for the first time this week. Later in the spring, NASDCTEc will seek public comment on the draft standards. Final standards are scheduled for public release in June 2012, at which point states will move individually to adopt and implement the CCTC.

Erin Uy, Communications & Marketing Manager

By Erin in NASDCTEc Announcements, NASDCTEc State Director, News
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