Posts Tagged ‘Idaho Career Technical Education’

State CTE Policy Update: Expansion and Growth in Idaho CTE

Tuesday, May 30th, 2023

Idaho is looking at innovative ways to support its career technical education (CTE) ecosystem by giving learners earlier access to CTE opportunities. However, they are also focused on matching program design with local workforce needs. One piece of legislation passed during the 2023 legislative session explores an innovative approach to both approving and funding local CTE programs. 

On March 31, 2023, Idaho’s governor signed into law House Bill 267 which established the Idaho Career Ready Students Program. This program creates additional opportunities for students in grades seven through twelve to experience CTE through the creation of an eleven-person governing council and a pool of grant funding to be given to new CTE programs proposed by local education agencies (LEAs). This is a supplemental, separate initiative from the state’s current CTE program of study approval process. 

The primary function of this council is to determine the eligibility of CTE programs at an individual or regional level. They will also be tasked with determining the costs associated with building these programs, including any initial costs of investing in industry partnerships and local school systems. Additionally, they will have access to $10 million in grant money to invest in the expansion and modernization of CTE programs which will be divided evenly between secondary and postsecondary opportunities.

This council will also oversee an ongoing $5 million in funding to invest in middle school CTE, including ensuring that students in grades seven and eight receive career exploration opportunities. Middle school learners will be expected to complete a learner plan as part of their “first step standards,” a plan to align their high school experiences with their choices in career exploration.

The eleven-member council is housed within the Department of Education that is led by the state superintendent of public instruction. Council membership consists of the CTE state director, two secondary-level CTE instructors, one postsecondary CTE instructor, three governor-appointed industry representatives, one representative from the Idaho workforce development council, one member of the state House of Representatives as appointed by the speaker, as well as one member of the state senate as appointed by the president pro tempore of the state senate.

Through this law, the goal is to create 180 new local CTE programs as well as provide financial literacy courses to all high school seniors. This works in conjunction with Idaho’s continuing investment in CTE, which is to facilitate an overall increase in funding to $34 million from 2020-2024. The council must also develop a long-term method to fund successful programs through the creation of an added-cost funding formula. The state superintendent, along with the state CTE director, is required to provide reports to the legislature on both program effectiveness and any added costs.

Appropriating funding for middle school CTE programming is an action many states are beginning to look into since the earlier learners have exposure to different career pathways, the more likely they are to embrace pathways outside of the ones they witness in their immediate environment. Allowing experts from the secondary and postsecondary CTE field, experts representing state workforce needs and the legislature to work together to disseminate the funding creates an interesting opportunity to collaboratively steer local CTE programs in the direction learners need to thrive in the workforce. This policy is an innovative way to leverage the expertise of those leading Idaho forward in workforce development and CTE through funding that states may be interested in adapting.

Connect to the 2022 Year in Review for additional ideas for innovative funding policies.

Brice Thomas, Policy Associate

By Jodi Langellotti in Public Policy
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The State’s Role in Communicating About CTE

Wednesday, September 26th, 2018

On Thursday, September 20, 2018, Advance CTE hosted a webinar to highlight the important role the state plays in communicating about Career Technical Education (CTE) and programs of study available for learners. This webinar is part of the four-part Communicating about CTE Webinar Series.

As CTE continues to gain popularity in the media and even the election campaign trail. However, there is a still a challenge to both communicate what CTE is and the benefits of CTE programs of study. In a survey of State CTE Directors and leaders, 74 percent reported the greatest challenge in promoting CTE is navigating the public’s perception. To offer a solution we spearheaded a research initiative.

Advance CTE, with support from the Siemens Foundation, commissioned focus groups and a national survey to explore the attitudes of parents and students currently involved in CTE, as well as prospective CTE parents and students. The survey revealed that school counselors, instructors and alumni of prospective parents and students are the best messengers to share the CTE story. It also revealed that only 47 percent of prospective parents and learners have heard of CTE, indicating that there is much work to be done to educate stakeholders about CTE.

In this webinar, Dwight Johnson, CTE State Administrator, Idaho Division of Career and Technical Education and Caty Solace, Outreach and Communications Manager, Idaho Workforce Development Council, shared the communications tactics they used to improve the image of CTE.

They provided some key takeaways including:

Idaho Career and Technical Education’s increased focus on communications has  resulted in a 23 percent increase in state CTE general fund budget after decades of being stagnant.

Overall, the advice shared was to be sure that communications is not an afterthought. Create goals, make a plan, establish branding, share real stories and get out into the field to spread the word. Hear the full webinar here. Join us for our next webinar in this series, discussing Engaging the Media, on October 10, 2018 at noon EST. Register here.

Nicole Howard, Communications Associate 

By admin in Uncategorized