Celebrating the growth and success of Career & Technical Education

When the U.S. Smith-Hughes Act was signed in 1917, establishing technical (or “vocational”) education in agriculture, few would have suspected the evolution of a much broader based Career and Technical Education (CTE) system across the country, including 12.5 million high school and college students in such subjects as agriculture, automotive technology, biotechnology, culinary arts, health occupations, and many others.  Today’s CTE programs reflect the increasingly complex technologies and advanced skills required of 21st century workers.

February is “CTE Month” in the United States, with a 2018 theme “Celebrate Today, Own Tomorrow.”  During this time, CTE programs across the country celebrate the many talents and accomplishments of their students, teachers, administrators and schools.  With rigorous technical program standards that also incorporate connections to required academics, CTE students are provided an education intended to prepare them for both entry-level positions toward high wage professions, as well as further post-secondary studies and training.  Connections to American industry are included in CTE programs in order to ensure that students are proficient in the latest practices and technologies, as well as links to future employers.  CTE not only provides students with the skills and understanding to be successful in their careers, but also establishes practical connections through which they may better understand and apply their academic education.  Students in CTE programs tend to be excited by what they are learning and eager to apply their education to the real world. To learn more about this opportunity for all students see the links below:

In  Maine the CTE system is a robust, relevant pathway for all students.

CTE education allows students to obtain industry credentials that are important to Maine businesses and companies. The required program advisory industry participation ensures this.  http://www.maine.gov/doe/cte/schools/standards/assessments.html http://www.maine.gov/doe/cte/resources/cluster.html

Recent legislation allows CTE as a pathway for students to earn a proficiency based diploma – students can now use their participation in an approved CTE program to meet the requirements of graduation. This will allow more students access to the rigorous programming in our CTE schools and gain more formal recognition for their learning and achievement in CTE. https://mainedoenews.net/?s=CTE+pathway

CTE uses research and labor statistics to approve their programs – this allows programs to remain relevant and incorporates labor needs into the programs offered to students. http://www.maine.gov/doe/cte/schools/documents/guide.pdf

CTE has revamped its programs in the last five years by hard work and commitment. We have:

  • implemented national industry standards,
  • developed an assessment system and the process to allow students to obtain an industry recognized credential
  • documented intersections between academic and CTE standards
  • developed secondary / post-secondary articulation systems including dual enrollments and state wide credits
  • Providing million-dollar equipment grants for CTE each year
  • developed and funded the bridge year program
  • increased trainings on safety and labor requirements

changed certification requirements to allow more industry experts to serve as CTE teachers who share their knowledge with our students

The CTE programs allow the students of Maine to prosper in their careers here in Maine and nationally.

For more information on Maine CTE, contact: Margaret.harvey@maine.gov