Posted by: Tom Ross | December 19, 2013

Holiday CTE Reading List

In the last few weeks there has been a flurry of new reports relating to CTE. Here is a reading list to help fill the time during the holidays.


Reflect, Transform, Lead: A New Vision for Career Technical Education, from the National Association of State Directors of Career Technical Education Consortium (NASDCTEc). This five-part series dedicates an issue brief to each of NASDCTEc’s core principles for CTE:

NASDCTEc also released The State of CTE: An Analysis of State Standards, a state-by-state study of the CTE benchmarks standards. And CTE is Your STEM Strategy, which suggests that “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.”

christmas_Bulb_Green_lightThe Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development’s presents their findings in the international Survey of Adult Skills, summarized on the DOE’s blog site.

Are You Competent? Prove it. The New York Times, Education Life section by Anya Kamenetz (who has authored many other interesting articles as well) writes about a movement to award college degrees based on demonstrable evidence of learning rather than credit hours. “College leaders say that by focusing on what people learn, not how or when they learn it, and by taking advantage of the latest technology, they can save students time and lower costs.”

christmas_Bulb_Red_lightThe Center on Great Teachers and Leaders at American Institutes for Research contributed 21st Century Educators: Developing and Supporting Great Career and Technical Education Teachers, a new special issue brief “focusing on the human capital management policies impacting CTE educators: certification, performance evaluation and professional learning opportunities.”

The Center on Education Policy issued Career Readiness Assessments across States: A Summary of Survey Findings, the result of a survey of 46 State CTE Directors on the range of assessments used in their states to measure students’ career readiness and how those assessments are used, which NASDCTEc.

The College Board in conjunction with Phi Delta Kappan published Toward a Common Model of Career-Technical Education,which “highlights the positive impact CTE programs had on three students who each took different pathways to academic and professional success. It later expands on their individual experiences and argues that these success stories are increasingly becoming the norm for students who choose to enroll in CTE programs— an encouraging trend considering 94% of all high school students in the U.S. take at least one CTE course.”

Christmas_firbranchA Fresh Look at Student Engagement from the National Survey of Student Engagement finds that “just 40 percent of college students say they turn to their adviser as their primary source of academic advice. About one-third of freshmen and 18 percent of seniors said they went to friends or family first for academic advice, and another 18 percent of seniors turned to faculty members for guidance.” This reliance on sources other than academic advisers is concerning given the importance advising plays in student learning and success, the report concludes.

Creating Sustainable Teacher Career Pathways from the National Network of State Teachers of the Year. Rick Hess at EdWeek states that it “is well-worth reading. It’s smart, thorough, and brings a sensible practitioner’s perspective to the whole question of how we might give teachers opportunities for growth, impact, and professional responsibility…”

christmas_Bulb_Yellow_lightA new report out of the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research by Tamar Jacoby, President and CEO of ImmigrationWorks USA calls on the private sector to engage in Career Technical Education. Vocational Education 2.0: Employers Hold the Key to Better Career Training makes the case that “CTE can provide reliably effective pathways to skilled and well-paying careers, but only with strong engagement and support from the business community.” The policy paper “explores the role CTE is playing as more attention is put on middle-skill jobs, or those that require some education and training beyond high school, but less than a four-year degree.”

 The College & Career Readiness & Success Center at the American Institutes for Research has developed the CCRS Interactive State Map, which provides snapshots of each state’s key college and career readiness initiatives, including CTE programs of study, dual enrollment and early college high schools, progress on state longitudinal data system and many others.

The Department of Health & Human Services’ Office of Family Assistance recently released Career Pathways: Catalog of Toolkits, an “online compendium of free resources available for use in planning a Career Pathways initiative. In an effort to better coordinate efforts by the Departments of Education, Labor, and HHS, the catalog seeks to serve as a directory for model Career Pathways programs and details strategies for implementation. Users are able to browse toolkits and filter results based on the indented audience, target population, career pathway element, industry, and publisher.”

christmas_Bulb_Purple_lightAnd finally, This is Not your Dad’s Vocational School, from the National Journal and Dalton High School in Georgia. “Seventy-four percent of Dalton High’s students are enrolled in career, technical, and agricultural courses. But this isn’t your father’s vocational ed. Here, training for particular careers is considered part of a well-rounded college-preparatory education.”

charlie-brown-christmas-tree-wallpapercharlie-brown-christmas-hd-wallpapers--1600x1200px--indiwall-h6soqwnzHappy Holidays from the CTE Central Blog Staff.

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