Career & Technical Education (CTE) - Edmentum

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Career & Technical Education (CTE): Designing a Successful Program A How-To Guide from Edmentum

Evolution of CTE Although education has several key goals, most of us agree that K–12 education should help prepare students to be college and career ready. So, it’s strange to recall that a decade or so ago, the parallel idea was mainly to ensure that students were either college or career ready. Back then, “career ready” simply meant being “job ready”—not necessarily being provided with a viable career base for the future. To address those learning disconnects, states and national professional organizations over the past few years have systematized and revamped their standards in the program of career and technical education (CTE). Nearly every state in the union has worked hard to redesign its CTE standards into coherent courses and plans of study, organized for the most part into the 16 Career Clusters defined by Advance CTE. In addition, state education agencies and state institutions of higher education are working together to ensure that plans of study can smoothly and coherently flow from K–12 into postsecondary education. All of these changes add up to an amazing curriculum evolution over a very short time. – Tom Boe, Senior Curriculum Developer, Edmentum Let’s get started; the role of CTE This informational booklet includes a range of CTE topics that span introductory to advanced. We will take a deep dive into the components of an evolving and improving CTE program to help hone in on a map for improvement and professional development. We know that you are all at individualized stages of development, but we want to make sure that we’re able to provide a resource that is capable of communicating the breadth and depth of CTE goals and to help identify your own strengths, weakness, opportunities, and threats to success in achieving programmatic and educational goals. Let’s get started! 2

Defining CTE What are Career Clusters ? Law, Public Safety & Security Hospitality & Tourism Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics Marketing, Sales & Service Careers Clusters Business Management & Administration Manufacturing Agriculture Food & Natural Resources Information Technology Government & Public Administration Human Services Transportation, Distribution & Logistics Architecture & Construction Finance Arts, A/V Technology & Communication Health Science Education & Training “CTE prepares both youths and adults for a wide range of careers and further educational opportunities. These careers may require varying levels of education—including industry-recognized certifications, postsecondary certificates, and two- and four-year degrees.” “[CTE] provides students of all ages with the academic and technical skills, knowledge and training necessary to succeed in future careers and to become lifelong learners.” “[CTE] is a term applied to schools, institutions, and educational programs that specialize in the skilled trades, applied sciences, modern technologies, and career preparation.” - Association for Career & Technical Education - Advance CTE - The Glossary of Education Reform 3 Career Clusters is a grouping of occupations and broad industries based on commonalities as defined by ACTE.

What’s your CTE goal? CTE is an overarching umbrella that reinforces: n n n n n Postsecondary readiness 21st century skills and soft skills Mathematics Language arts Sciences 93% 80% Outcomes of developed CTE programs: n n n n n n n Reduction of achievement gap Increased passing rate on standardized tests Improved graduation rate Reduction of dropouts Increase of dual credits attained Increase of industry certifications reported Academic integration The average high school graduation rate for CTE concentrators is 93%, compared to an average national freshman graduation rate of 80%.* In any program planning process it’s best to start by identifying a goal. Jot down a broad goal for your CTE program. We’ll review this same goal at the conclusion of this workbook and hopefully be able to identify specific steps you can take in order to reach your CTE program plan objectives. What’s your CTE goal? 4 *Source: Association for Career and Technical Education

Who is CTE for? CTE is for all students from all backgrounds. The contextual knowledge and skills aid students in identifying, guiding, and achieving their goals. The practice of goal-setting itself is a worthy attribute to attain as a characteristic of successful people. CTE first introduces the array of careers that adults across the world enjoy, then provides connected information toward acquisition of that career, and delivers a sequence of learning opportunities that place students on the threshold of that career. Many students have little career frame of reference outside of their immediate circles of family and friends. CTE opens the door and mitigates the barrier of entry for all students toward careers. Even if students change their minds about their chosen careers throughout their time participating in CTE programs, they still benefit from goal-setting experiences, interpersonal communications, problem-solving situations, and metacognitive applications of learning. 5

CTE program development planning Middle School Populations; Career Exploration 7–9: High School Populations; College & Career Readiness 8-12: Connection of careers to academics and society Career explorations, beginning to develop essential career skills and principles At the elementary and intermediate levels, career awareness curricula and instruction connects academic and social themes to careers in the community. Career awareness gives students relevant examples of concepts found in the workplace and introduces students to careers with which they may not be familiar. Middle school students explore the scope of careers through survey courses that compare common employability attributes and contrast the differences across clusters. Career exploration is meant to ignite the curiosity of the learners, align interests and aptitude to goals, and inform the four-year planning of the students and their families. Participation in principles and pathway courses with essential career skills aligned to core standards What is one thing you can implement this year to expose elementary students to CTE? What is one idea you can implement this year to expose middle school students to CTE? Elementary School Populations; Career Awareness K–6: 6 High school students embark on their career-aimed curricular journey by taking a coherent sequence of CTE courses designed to scaffold employability knowledge, skills, and experience and concurrently support their interdisciplinary needs. What is one thing you can implement this year to expose high school students to CTE?

Example CTE program goals Here’s a holistic way of identifying CTE program goals. Does your goal incorporate these elements? 1. Increase in CTE Dual or Articulated Credit YES NO 2. Career & Tech Student Organizations support YES NO 3. Work-Based Learning integration YES NO 4. Readiness and skills accumulation for certification YES NO Example interest survey Activities that describe what I like to do: 1. .Learn how things grow and stay alive. 2.Make the best use of the earth’s natural resources. 3.Hunt and/or fish. 4.Protect the environment. 5.Be outdoors in all kinds of weather. 6.Plan, budget, and keep records. Personal qualities that describe me: School subjects that I like: 1. Self-reliant 1. Math 2. Nature lover 2. Life Sciences 3. Physically active 3. Earth Sciences 4. Planner 4. Chemistry 5. Creative problem solver 5. Agriculture 7.Operate machines and keep them in good repair. Example from: dentInterestSurvey-English.pdf Think about the role of student interest surveys when goal setting. Interest surveys allow students to make statements regarding motivations, interests, and preferences in how they interact, think, and eventually support themselves. Some interest surveys are more general, focusing on the person, others connect and suggest career clusters. 7

Example CTE program goals 1. Identify a group of students that you could have complete an interest survey. Which group would you like to survey? 2. Choose your audience: Elementary Middle 3. Pick three questions you’d ask your target audience. What questions do you have for your audience? 8 High

CTE landscape Dual Credit/Dual Enrollment Dual credit consists of negotiated, aligned curriculum taught by a district employee with adjunct status or a representative of the college. These courses can be taught face to face, blended or virtually, with the student earning college credit concurrent to high school credit. Articulated Credit Articulated credit is another type of negotiated college credit, but articulated credit requires successful completion of a sequence of courses in order to attain the reciprocal equivalent in the colleges. Credit is negotiated with the local college or broader consortium so that two to three high school Carnegie Units are credited for college hours (i.e., one credit of A/V production plus two credits of advanced A/V production delivers three hours of college media production, upon enrollment). Dual credit appears immediately on a college transcript, but articulated credit is granted upon enrollment or completion of a semester at the institution. Metacognitive Assessments Within career-exploration courses, as students are learning how careers interconnect with society, they also are learning about themselves and their own goals as they experience self-reflection. CTE programs offer interests, skills, and learning styles assessments to be coupled with academic and readiness data to guide pathways. Skill-based assessments help students self-assess their strengths and weaknesses in applicable skills toward careers. These skills may be technical or soft, and the students’ metacognition of their answers and results are great to use formatively as students progress through pathways. Learning styles assessments add the third level of metacognition to guide students’ decisions on class delivery, location, etc., to best empower their learning. With the recognition that CTE classes can be delivered multiple ways to best serve students, those students can plan for those deliveries in their pathways. It is a best practice to deliver these assessments at least twice between grades 7 and 11 in order to update student development, inform decision-making for student stakeholders within pathways, and milestone progress toward career goals. 9

Planning CTE can be incorporated into curricula in many different ways. Below are a few suggested planning tools to help you get started. Incorporate into core curriculum From elementary through secondary schools, students benefit from integration of career lessons. CTE lesson integration delivers relevance to math, science, language arts, and social studies, and career context provides the vehicle for application and above levels of taxonomical growth. Project-based learning (PBL) is empowered through work-based learning (WBL). The question “When will I ever use this?” is diffused as teachers provide examples, applications, and opportunities for creation/evaluation through career connections. Career exploration Career exploration is the critical transitional process for students to begin the metacognition within careers as related to their values, preferences, systems of belief, and goals. Students within career-exploration curriculum find their interests, the landscape of the world of work, and the necessary goals that must be set and met to achieve success. Career-exploration curriculum may constitute a credit within a school or district, but it is invaluable no matter if it is delivered in advisory or supplemental fashions. Many core teachers find that integration of career exploration, postsecondary readiness, and 21 century skills/soft skills lessons strengthen their scope and sequences as well. The essential outcome of career exploration is the four- or six-year plan for each student. Many schools are now conjoining the four-year plans with individual education plans so that all students have a map for success toward college and career readiness. 10

Planning Four- and six-year planning Four-year plans are developed, preferably in 8th or 9th grade in order to lay out a sequence of academics for students. The sooner that pathways are developed, the sooner students can embark on them and support networks can monitor students. The plans lay out the course sequences for academics (math, ELA, social studies, science, physical education/athletics, foreign language, etc.) and electives (including CTE). This ensures that counselors and support teams can put the students in the classes that they are excited to take, need to graduate, or are required to take to attain certification/experience. Student plans are also used for planning, program goal setting, staffing, budgeting, and more on the part of the school/district. Additionally, six-year plans can either precede the four years of high school or succeed them. The most common six-year plan is to plan four years of high school and two years of postsecondary education, being two years of traditional college or trade school. Sometimes, schools will extend the existing four-year plan in 10th grade to make it a six-year plan. The plan reestablishes steps to success, including course sequence, dual credit, graduation, and any needed certifications. Online Planning Worksheets This worksheet booklet provides example 4-and 6-year plans, as well as blank templates to help you get started planning. Use this worksheet to identify an endorsement for a student, if applicable, or end goal for after graduation, while clearly understanding and identifying a path for each student. Click here for our planning worksheet 11

CTE pathways Pathways are developed at the state and district level to provide students with a coherent sequence of classes that scaffold career readiness and deliver three or more Carnegie Units or credits. A common sequence is: Introductory Foundational Theory Advanced Dual Credit/ Work-Based Learning Diploma pathways Diploma pathways are relatively new to CTE sequencing and align as components of an alternate graduation plan. Within diploma pathways, it is common to include: n Sequenced CTE courses with advanced courses sometimes substituting for a fourth math, science, or ELA credit n A specific career preparation course n Completed industry certification n Requisite college readiness scores on tests like SAT , ACT , or WorkKeys exams Pathway maps Pathway maps are a visual representation of coherent sequences to aid stakeholders in planning. Students and families have models from which to work in creating or updating fourand six-year plans. Teachers and administrators utilize the big picture layout to communicate and partner with the community, businesses, and colleges. Strong pathway maps will also include options for career and technical student organizations (CTSOs) and certifications. 12

Implementation models Face-to-Face: Learning occurs at a traditional brick-andmortar location with teacher-facilitated management of text and application activities. This model often mixes textbooks, workbooks, pencil-to-paper tests, and hands-on practice and assessment. Face-to-face learning is no longer the primary instructional model of CTE across the nation. Blended: Blended learning is the current most common CTE instructional model due to its flexibility and versatility. Teachers use a blend of in-person and virtual/digital instruction and assessment to meet the varied needs of learners. Virtual: Virtual learning utilizes online curriculum, instruction, and assessment to provide access to students. Activities may be synchronous, asynchronous, or even offline. Student certifications By now, the notion of an industry certification or licensure as the integral goal for students has become a presumption rather than exception. Traditionally, the top students in given pathways attain certifications, and skilled teachers often had greater success in helping students get these certifications. Now, campuses and districts are recognizing that they need to instill systems that help all students matriculate through the certification no matter background, demographics, or other factors process. Students need to metacognitively evaluate their own progress toward the certification test. Personalized learning communities of teachers, administrators, and advisory-board members need to develop systems that empower all students to stay with their program, develop skills and knowledge in each course toward said certification test, and take practice tests that replicate depth of knowledge and testing environment. 13

Data and CTE Data management in CTE has grown to greater importance as educators monitor progress toward assessments and certifications. The registration and collection of data within classes and pathways are the biggest and fastest-growing components due to the importance of CTE. The difficulty lies in the fact that there are many different types of measurements that districts are monitoring. Below is a set of data points to monitor across programs, including recommended subjects in which to focus: n n n n n n n n n Student interest data Enrollment by category (participant, concentrator, completer) and demographics Academic testing data disaggregated (including CTE and end-of-course data) Student intervention data Certification and career-readiness testing data, by quantity and proficiency PBL, WBL, internship data Technology integration data Professional development data Teacher certification and endorsement data The key to data management is to ensure that your data points do not exist independently of each other. It’s important for educators to work collaboratively to consolidate data into one data-rich environment where reports can be easily sorted, aggregated, and monitored in a visual format by both educators and administrators. Brainstorm names of team members who will be the core group managing your CTE program development. Which team members are in our core group? 14

CTE outside of the classroom For truly effective career and technical education, it’s key to give students opportunities and experiences outside of the classroom. Work-based learning (WBL) can be performed and replicated in the classroom or at home for homebound students in distance-learning opportunities, but you really need the students to be connecting with the real world. Whether presenting to community partners, going and collecting information about careers, competing in career and technical student organizations (CTSOs), or working in a capstone internship, the authenticity of that learning experience strengthens the metacognitive connections. Articulating the CTE experience Career-ready students utilize portfolios of their best industry-caliber work. These different work samples can be physical or digital in form. They provide evidence to all CTE program stakeholders, including the student, that the individual has the abilities to be successful in that industry-connected career. The artifacts should be collected systematically, spanning CTE pathway courses, 21st-century-skilldevelopment-activities, and WBL experiences. Work-based learning (WBL) Work-based learning begins within the classroom, but it is really a method of incubating students to be ready for college and career experiences. Job shadowing, internships, and project-based activities connected to actual industry work give experiential validity to student’s learning. This type of immersive learning environment fosters quick analyses and application of knowledge and skills. These learning opportunities are often the most robust and dynamic learning that students experience. For developing CTE programs, a growing WBL program is a key catalyst in meeting other program growth goals. Articulating the CTE experience Work-based learning 15

CTE outside of the classroom Community partnerships When developing community partners, it’s essential to build a network of advisors who can give you constructive criticism, offer experiential opportunities, and provide feedback on continuous improvement opportunities for you when supporting the development of students for the workforce. Many times when you first approach community members about a partnership, their first thought is of money or donations. Truly, it’s more about faces of the community and industry; examples within context; conversations; and communication opportunities between teachers, students, and the community. These partnerships construct and develop the most robust work-based learning opportunities and give immediacy to suggestions of improvement areas in the skill development of students. Community connections include: n Advisory boards n Internships and externships n Work-based learning opportunities n Guest speakers n Career-day conversations It’s a great idea to select the career-day presentations that expand past parents of students and that also use specific lessons or themes current in the classrooms or that are based on student-interest surveys. Externships Externships are opportunities for teachers to gain work experience in the industry so that they may infuse those experiences, skills, and resources into their curriculum for students. These externships can be utilized by CTE teachers as well as core academic teachers all the way down to elementary school. Community partnerships 16 Externships

CTE outside of the classroom Workplace experience For students who have exposure to CTE outside of the classroom environment, it’s an opportunity to apply reading skills, math skills, and social interaction skills that they’ve learned across their different classes. Not only do students have to prepare to take a test by building knowledge, but they also take practice tests to learn about specific environments or careers. A key career-readiness piece is the socialization of students. This gives them the opportunity to experience entry into a new workplace or a new career and the ability to say to say, “Yes, I have the requisite knowledge and skills, and I can step right in and be a functioning member of this team.” Employers and community partners who have hired students with experience of CTE courses would agree that the students are poised and ready to work. Feedback from community partners is essential, as they need to communicate with the students, teachers, and administrators in the program, the improvements need to be given to students so that metacognitive recognition can occur. Practicums and internships Often a practicum or internship is the culminating experience in a CTE pathway. These can be components of a capstone course. In these learning environments, students communicate with their CTE teacher and work supervisor for feedback, grades, and selected areas for improvement. It is of great value for students to journal, develop portfolios, and communicate their experiences with class peers so that success, confusion, missteps, and suggestions can all be shared with the learning community for improvement. Workplace experience Practicums and internships 17

CTE outside of the classroom Career and technical student organizations Career and technical student organizations (CTSOs) provide opportunities for students to engage in projects and competitions and to demonstrate their knowledge and skills toward career readiness. Students can enjoy chances to test their mettle against future colleagues in their career fields. A best practice is to engage with CTSOs gradually over time. In year one, utilize the projects and competitions in the classroom to incubate the momentum. If one or more projects meets the high-quality requirements of the rubric, you could enter those. In year two, strategically add in the performance competitions to the calendar. The actual competitions will take place away from campus at a neutral location. The competitions replicate the high-stakes environment of the actual workplace. For more information on CTSOs, we encourage you to connect with the following organizations: 18 National FFA (Future Farmers of America) Future Business Leaders of America HOSA-Health Occupations Students of America Business Professionals of America SkillsUSA Family, Career and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) Technology Student Association (TSA) Educators Rising

Bringing it all together Now that you’ve completed this informational workbook, you can begin the basic steps of planning your career and technical education program. We encourage you to summarize a few activities to help get you started! Which planning tool will you work on first (check one)? Incorporate CTE Expand career skills into curriculum Start four- or six-year planning What is your CTE goal? S Specific M A Measurable Complete a SMART goals grid here. Attainable R T Realistic Time-Bound What’s one action that you can commit to today that will help you meet your CTE goals? 19

Your career and technical education partner Edmentum is founded in innovation and committed to being a trusted partner to create successful student outcomes everywhere learning occurs. We can give you the resources—and the expertise—to leverage the power of effective learning solutions. 1. Program Needs Analysis 2. Implementation & Onboarding Review online curriculum learning strategies and best practices. Tailor onboarding process to meet the specific needs of your educators 3. Professional Development Continuous support focused on preparing and sustaining a CTE program www.edmentum.com/resources We also provide a variety of resources on our website that can help you implement your solution. Success Stories Discover the success that schools and districts achieve in partnering with Edmentum. Blog Explore how technology is changing education. Videos Visit our video library, and view clips of industry thought leaders, customer testimonials, and product overviews. Whitepapers and Efficacy Dig through the data behind why our products work and how to use them more effectively. Webinars Hear how online education is redefining the 21st century classroom. Workshops Take advantage of these free customer resources to learn how to get started and better utilize our products to implement a world-class program. Contact us today for more information. www.edmentum.com – 800.447.5286 edmentum.com 800.447.5286 info@edmentum.com AC032-15 033121 5600 W 83rd Street Suite 300, 8200 Tower Bloomington, MN 55437 2021 EDMENTUM, INC.

past few years have systematized and revamped their standards in the program of career and technical education (CTE). Nearly every state in the union has worked hard to redesign its CTE standards into coherent courses and plans of study, organized for the most part into the 16 Career Clusters defined by Advance CTE. In addition, state .

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