Spotlighting CTE Data

Recently, the Philanthropy Roundtable published a book, Learning to Be Useful, for funders on the value of career and technical education investment. By offering a collection of user-friendly data points, understanding of how to develop strong CTE programs, and spotlighting programs that are “doing it right,” the Philanthropy Roundtable offers an important contribution to the future of CTE.

Rather than summarize the new book, it is perhaps more valuable to point readers to a review Andy Smarick, the president of the Maryland State Board of Education and visiting scholar at the Johns Hopkins School of Education, recently wrote for Education Next. In his review, Smarick smartly noted:

High school CTE programs need rebranding (many people still perceive them very negatively). Students need convenient ways, times, and places to enter training and sequence the collection of credentials. Adults in particular need to know there will be a discernible return on investment before they enroll in any program. “Stackable credentials” allow participants to accumulate skills gradually, each adding immediate value and building toward the future. Programs must be responsive to changing labor markets and reflect the latest technology.

 Smarick’s review, and the Philanthropy Roundtable book, are definitely worth the read.

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