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Posts Tagged ‘STEM’

CTE Research Review

Thursday, December 19th, 2013

Research Image_6.2013

Welcome to the final CTE Research Review of 2013! Below are some new and notable reports on issues impacting Career Technical Education.

The Education Commission of States (ECS) launched a 50-state database of dual/concurrent enrollment policies, including state reports, comparable data and links to specific legislation and regulations. The database includes information on access, finance, quality assurance and transferability. With about a third of all dual/concurrent credits earned by high school students in CTE disciplines, this is a key issue for CTE leaders and students.

The Afterschool Alliance released a new brief, Computing and Engineering in Afterschool, which explores why and how afterschool programs can help equip students with the skills they need to pursue engineering and computer science education and careers – and help fill gaps in traditional K-12 education. For more on STEM and the Afterschool Alliance, check out their STEM Impact Awards.

The Center for American Progress (CAP) has released two briefs in the last two months focusing on reforms in the higher education space: Meeting Students Where They Are: Profiles of Students in Competency-Based Degree Programs” and “A Path Forward: Game-Changing Reforms in Higher Education and the Implications for Business and Financing Models.” The first report explores various competency-based education models at the postsecondary level. In addition to laying out these models – from direct assessment to hybrid degrees – the brief also captures students’ perspectives and experiences earning degrees at their own pace and leveraging knowledge already gained in school and the workplace. It’s a compelling read and was discussed at a recent CAP event, which can be watched here.

The latter report focuses on some identified “game changers” for postsecondary education, notably stackable credentials, competency-based education and the Guided Pathways to Success model, laying out the benefits and the barriers that need to be removed to ensure more Americans have access to high-quality postsecondary learning, aligned with the demands of industry.

Finally, this week the National Center for Education Statistics released the annual Trial Urban District Assessment results, which was designed to explore how feasible it is to use the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) at the district level. For the 2013 administration, 21 districts participated. While a number of districts posted gains over previous years’ assessments, the results are by and large still very low across these urban districts, particularly for minority students. For a good (and honest) analysis of these results, check out Education Next.

Kate Blosveren, Associate Executive Director

By Kate Blosveren in Research, Uncategorized
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New NASDCTEc Paper & Webinar: CTE Is Your STEM Strategy

Tuesday, December 17th, 2013

Today the National Association of State Directors of Career Technical Education Consortium (NASDCTEc) released a new policy paper entitled CTE Is Your STEM Strategy, exploring the inherent relationship between CTE and STEM goals, elements and expectations.

Simply put, STEM must not be viewed as a separate enterprise from CTE. While a state’s CTE programs may not encompass everything within a state’s STEM strategy, high-quality CTE programs can provide a strong foundation for and serve as a delivery system of STEM competencies and skills for a broader range of students. Too often, STEM strategies are created separately from and without a clear understanding of how CTE can support and strengthen such efforts. This paper aims to bring this disconnect to the forefront and demonstrate the natural connection for the many stakeholders working to advance CTE and STEM in their communities.

Looking ahead, state and local leaders should work collaboratively to identify where CTE is delivering high-quality STEM skills and competencies successfully, where efforts need to be shored up, and how to best scale those programs with the greatest value to students, employers and our nation.

The paper was released during a webinar featuring Tina Marcus, Project Manager, STEM Education and Leadership, North Carolina Department of Public Instruction; Dr. Tony Baldwin, Superintendent of Buncombe County Schools in North Carolina; Dr. Linda Rosen, CEO of Change the Equation; and Kate Blosveren, NASDCTEc’s Associate Executive Director.

Click here to download CTE Is Your STEM Strategy and access the recording and slides from the webinar here.

Kate Blosveren, Associate Executive Director

By Kate Blosveren in NASDCTEc Resources, Publications, Webinars
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Reminder to Register Now for NASDCTE Webinar: CTE is Your STEM Strategy

Thursday, December 12th, 2013

Registration is open and continuing to accept attendees for the NASDCTEc webinar CTE is Your STEM Strategy, which broadcasts December 17, 2014.

Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education is attracting interest across the nation. In many states, top policy leaders, including governors, K-12 chief state school officers and economic development commissioners,  have made STEM central to their reform platforms. A significant number of states have STEM coalitions in place to coordinate  STEM activities across agencies and industries.  Business leaders routinely call for more STEM-ready graduates broadly and within specific industry and specialty areas at the national, state and local levels.

While states, districts and schools strive to operationalize a concept like STEM, many already are offering high-quality Career Technical Education (CTE) programs that impart critical academic, technical and employability skills. To connect the dots between CTE and STEM for policymakers and advocates, NASDCTEc will be releasing a new report entitled “CTE is Your STEM Strategy.” This report will be released to coordinate with the webinar on December 17, 2013. The paper makes the case that STEM must not be viewed as a separate enterprise from CTE, as high-quality CTE programs can help provide a strong foundation for and serve as a delivery system of STEM skills and competencies for a broad range of students.

Join the following speakers for a webinar that will discuss this paper, how CTE and STEM can advance one another, and provide examples from states successfully integrating their CTE and STEM strategies.

Date: December 17, 2013

Time: 3 p.m. Eastern

Link to Register: https://cisco.webex.com/cisco/onstage/g.php?d=205708527&t=a

Ramona Schescke, Member Services Manager

By Ramona in Webinars
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Register Now for NASDCTE Webinar: CTE is Your STEM Strategy

Thursday, November 21st, 2013

Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education is attracting interest across the nation. In many states, top policy leaders, including governors, K-12 chief state school officers and economic development commissioners,  have made STEM central to their reform platforms. A significant number of states have STEM coalitions in place to coordinate  STEM activities across agencies and industries.  Business leaders routinely call for more STEM-ready graduates broadly and within specific industry and specialty areas at the national, state and local levels.
 
While states, districts and schools strive to operationalize a concept like STEM, many already are offering high-quality Career Technical Education (CTE) programs that impart critical academic, technical and employability skills. To connect the dots between CTE and STEM for policymakers and advocates, NASDCTEc will be releasing a new report entitled “CTE is Your STEM Strategy.” This report will be released to coordinate with the webinar on December 17, 2013. The paper makes the case that STEM must not be viewed as a separate enterprise from CTE, as high-quality CTE programs can help provide a strong foundation for and serve as a delivery system of STEM skills and competencies for a broad range of students.
 
Join NASDCTEc staff and field experts for a webinar that will discuss this paper, how CTE and STEM can advance one another, and provide examples from states successfully integrating their CTE and STEM strategies.

Date: December 17, 2013

Time: 3 p.m. Eastern

Link to Register: https://cisco.webex.com/cisco/onstage/g.php?d=205708527&t=a

Ramona Schescke, Member Services Manager

By Ramona in Webinars
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July CTE Monthly: Driving the STEM, IT and Manufacturing Workforce

Wednesday, July 24th, 2013

CTE Monthly, a collaborative publication from the Association for Career and Technical Education and the National Association of State Directors of Career Technical Education Consortium, features the latest news on Career Technical Education (CTE) from across the nation for CTE stakeholders and Members of Congress.

In the July edition, read more about:

View archived CTE Monthly newsletters and other advocacy resources on our Advocacy Tools webpage.

Kara Herbertson, Research and Policy Manager

By Kara in NASDCTEc Resources, News, Public Policy, Research
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New Blog Series: CTE Research Review

Wednesday, June 19th, 2013

NASDCTEc is excited to launch a new blog series – CTE Research Review! This blog will feature the latest research and reports about CTE and other related education and workforce issues. 

Research Image_6.2013The Council on Foreign Relations released a new report, “Progress Report and Scorecard: Remedial Education,” that has been referenced several times this week by figures such as U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan to illustrate the importance of educating and training a globally-competitive workforce. The authors of this report stress that the United States is slipping in global competitiveness and that the achievement gap between wealthy and non-wealthy students is widening. The authors also write that “Human capital is perhaps the single most important long-term driver of an economy,” and challenge the federal government to put in place programs that will expand high-quality education for all students.

ACT’s “STEM Education Pipeline: Doing the Math on Recruiting Math and Science Teachers,” reviews the proposed federal STEM Teacher Pathway program – aimed at getting 100,000 qualified science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) professionals into the classroom over the next decade – and finds an insufficient number of STEM college graduates who would be qualified or willing to become STEM teachers. To meet the number of teachers needed, the authors suggest recruitment strategies targeted toward “STEM-capable students interest in education and STEM-capable students undecided of their college major.”

A new issue brief from the Education Commission of the States, “Reimagining Business Involvement: A New Frontier for Postsecondary Education,” lays out research-backed models and strategies to improve the quality of credentials and increase alignment with the needs of business and industry. Suggestions include possible methods of engagement to strengthen partnerships between business/industry and education, the role of state policy in building a statewide partnership plan, and economic benefits for states.

A recent study from the National Research Center for Career and Technical Education examines South Carolina’s programs of study and career pathways developed through the state’s Education and Economic Development Act (EEDA) and finds some positive impacts for the students. The study indicates that EEDA positively impacts career-focused activities at all schools and enhances the role of school guidance counselors.

The National Center for Education Statistics released its annual “Condition of Education” report. Two areas of relevance highlighted by this year’s report are “Trends in Employment Rates by Educational Attainment” and “The Status of Rural Education.” Not surprisingly, the report shows that employment for males and females (ages 25 – 64) was lower in 2012 than in 2008 regardless of education levels due to recovery from the economic recession. Between 1990 and 2012, employment rates for those with a bachelor’s degree remained higher than those with less than a bachelor’s degree.

The report on rural education found that students in rural districts experienced higher graduation rates (80 percent) than students in city (68 percent) or town districts (79 percent) but slightly lower rates than suburban districts (81 percent).

Kara Herbertson, Research and Policy Manager

By Kara in News, Research
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State-Driven Group Releases Next Generation Science Standards

Thursday, April 11th, 2013

A consortium of states released this week the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), a final set of internationally-benchmarked science standards that identify practices and content that all K-12 students should master in order to be college and career ready.

Teams from 26 states worked for 2 years with a writing team to develop the NGSS. The state-driven process was managed by Achieve and was primarily funded by the Carnegie Corporation.

The NGSS are based on a Framework for K-12 Science Education published by the National Academies’ National Research Council in 2011. Rather than focusing solely on practice, the standards also bring a stronger focus to science content and a greater emphasis to critical thinking. The NGSS are research-based and take into account research on how students learn science most effectively – striving for a more holistic, investigative approach to science.

Susan Codere, a project coordinator for NGSS in Michigan, emphasized the importance of preparing students to be both college ready and career ready. Codere said of the NGSS, “Our conversation about education always includes workforce training. Whenever we adopt a new set of standards we make sure to promote the opportunities the standards afford, not just in terms of college readiness, but in terms of workforce readiness. That’s particularly relevant with the NGSS.”

The NGSS can be viewed here.

Kara Herbertson, Research and Policy Manager

By Kara in News, Resources
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U.S. Senator Pushes for CTE and STEM Diplomas in New York

Wednesday, November 21st, 2012

Over the last few years, the mismatch of the skills gained by students versus those needed on the job has become an urgent issue. In New York, industry leaders in areas such as high-tech manufacturing, nanotechnology, and biosciences have struggled to staff their workforces because students simply are not equipped with the right skills. To help close this skills gap, U.S. Senator Charles Schumer of New York has launched an initiative in his state to provide a Career Technical Education (CTE) diploma and a Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) diploma.

CTE has increasingly been recognized for delivering relevant knowledge and skills that prepare college- and career-ready students for in-demand careers. Senator Schumer’s initiative shows recognition that CTE, including STEM, is vital to meet changing regional economic demands.

Schumer’s proposed CTE diploma is focused specifically on skills needed for success in New York’s manufacturing industry. The path to a CTE diploma would incorporate career-focused classes and curriculum that could replace an elective or a core class. Each diploma would require rigorous assessments to ensure students’ college and career readiness. Altogether, New York high school students would have three options for a diploma: traditional, STEM, or CTE.

In light of the urgent need for qualified workers in CTE and STEM areas, Senator Schumer is urging the New York State Board of Regents to approve these options and move forward with the process to implement the initiative beginning in September 2013.

Kara Herbertson, Research and Policy Manager

By Kara in News, Public Policy
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Secretary Duncan Outlines Progress Made and Goals for the Future

Tuesday, October 2nd, 2012

This afternoon Secretary of Education Arne Duncan spoke at the National Press Club about the state of American education. Duncan highlighted the Obama Administration’s achievements and challenges over the last four years and offered his take on the obstacles facing public schools in the years ahead.

Chief among the Department’s endeavors are raising standards, improving student performance, reducing dropout rates, and strengthening the teaching profession. But, as we in the CTE community know, education also plays an important role in strengthening the economy and closing the skills gap. Said Duncan: “With more than three million unfilled jobs in this country, [the public] understand[s] that we have a skills gap that will only be closed if America does a better job training and preparing people for work.” The public supports investing in education, but as Duncan pointed out, they worry about where the money will come from.

Duncan laid out the areas where there is still work to be done, including reforming CTE programs in high schools and community colleges, state-driven accountability, recruiting more math and science teachers, and closing the skills gap.

By Nancy in Public Policy
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Democrats Support Career Academies and Technical Training in Party Platform

Tuesday, September 4th, 2012

This week in Charlotte, the Democrats released their party’s platform which outlines how their policies will help America out-education, out-innovate and out-build the rest of the world. As we reported last week, the Republican party’s platform included their support for CTE at the secondary and postsecondary levels. The Democrats also voiced their support for secondary CTE, saying that they would “continue to strengthen all our schools and work to expand public school options for low-income youth, including magnet schools, charter schools, teacher-led schools, and career academies.”

At the postsecondary level, Democrats called for greater access to higher education and technical training. To that end, the party supports the following proposals that would improve the skills of students and adult workers:

Nancy Conneely, Public Policy Manager

By Nancy in Public Policy
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