Welcome Stephen Schatz as the new State CTE Director in Hawai’i

Advance CTE commits to investing in formal leadership development for our members. The New State Director Institute (NSDI) uses a cohort model to welcome and support first-year State Career Technical Education (CTE) Directors. Each cohort is connected with mentors and other national leaders; provided leadership tools and resources; and offered instructional workshops designed to assist them as they develop and implement their state-wide visions for CTE. This and upcoming blogs in the Getting to Know blog series will introduce you to the Fall 2021 NSDI cohort!

Welcome Stephen Schatz as the new State CTE Director in Hawai’i. The University of Hawai’i, which serves as the state’s Perkins eligible agency, houses the team Stephen leads – the Hawai’i P-20 Partnerships for Education. He comes to this role with educational experience that spans from the early grades through postsecondary; He has served as a 3rd grade teacher, a school principal and administrator, and the Deputy Superintendent for the state. Stephen was a stakeholder in the writing of Hawai’i’s Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act (Perkins V) state plan. As Stephen assumes the roles of leading the CTE state team, he will also guide the Hawai ‘i Data eXchange Partnership (Hawai‘i DXP), an inter‐agency team responsible for the statewide longitudinal data system to inform policy and decisionmaking for the improvement of educational outcomes in Hawai‘i.

Uniquely, Hawai’i only has one school district and one higher education system and recently the state’s CTE office merged with the Hawai’i P-20 Partnerships for Education office. Stephen is looking forward to leveraging the islands’ educational landscape, recent governance shift, and his new leadership position as State Director to empower learners from preschool and beyond through fully aligned pathways that connect secondary and postsecondary education with the needs of employers. . Understanding the geographic needs of each community and identifying career interests and passions for learners across the islands, especially in rural and remote areas, while increasing their access to equitable programs of study is of high importance for Stephen and his work to implement a statewide vision for the future of CTE.

Hawai’i is known as a top tourist destination, and the effects of the current global pandemic has challenged and reshaped the makeup of the state’s industry and workforce needs. However, Stephen sees the change in local labor market needs as an opportunity to diversify the state’s economy and allow CTE programs to intentionally contribute to the talent pipeline. Key to this work is increasing interest from business and industry to collaborate with the P-20 system and finding new avenues for business engagement that are fueled by authentic self-interest over pure philanthropy.

When away from the office, you can catch Stephen surfing the island waves or at home in the kitchen cooking his favorite stews.

Please join us in welcoming Stephen to Advance CTE!

Learn more about the work in Hawai’i by viewing their CTE state profile and the state resource page in the Learning that Works Resource Center.

Brittany Cannady, Senior Associate Digital Media

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