Texas high school students need to gain proficiency in 21st century skills, and the state of Texas needs college and workforce-ready graduates for a 21st century economy.
According to a study sponsored by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation in 2006, 81 percent of dropouts responded that “real-world learning” and the opportunity “to see the connection between school and getting a job” may have encouraged them to finish high school.
There are many higher education options –including but not limited to a 4-year degree.Students should consider: • What are my career aspirations? Consider personal interest, current workforce needs, and starting salaries. • What higher education training do I need in order to achieve these aspirations? Consider the return on investment of time and money in various pathways. • What high school courses should I take to prepare myself for this training?
Texas high school studentsneed to gain proficiency in21 st century skills, and thestate of Texas needscollege and workforce-ready graduates for a 21 stcentury economy.
The truth is, there’s anotherpathway tosuccess…
In 2010, Texas allocated $250million in state and federal fundsfor dropout prevention andrecovery initiatives, of whichcareer and technical education(CTE) is an integral part.
Career andTechnicalEducationThey’re not your parents’“vocational” courses
What’s the difference? Highly rigorous CTE programs provide academic credit, leadership opportunities, and college credit, and lead to licensure and certification focused on the demands of today’s competitive workforce Texas CTE courses are organized by 16 federally defined career clusters, including Health Sciences, IT, and Manufacturing In 2010, updated state academic standards and all new CTE courses were implemented in districts throughout the state to support college and career readiness Source: www.ctat.org
Students who take two or more CTEcourses have lower dropout rates, highergraduation rates, better attendance ratesand higher test scores than students whotake one or no CTE courses. Source: Texas Education Agency
Why?According to a study sponsored bythe Bill and Melinda Gates Foundationin 2006, 81 percent of dropoutsresponded that “real-world learning”and the opportunity “to see theconnection between school andgetting a job” may have encouragedthem to finish high school. Source: www.ctat.org
CTE prepares students for the“real world” and the fastestgrowing Texas occupations. Source: Texas Workforce Commission
Examples of CTE career fields: JOB DESCRIPTION SALARY CTE Cluster Dental Hygienist $63,200 Health Science Commercial Pilot $62,000 Transportation Registered Nurse $59,700 Health Science Electrical Repair $55,600 STEM Avionics $50,500 Transportation Technician
Examples of CTE career fields: JOB DESCRIPTION SALARY CTE Cluster Electronic Drafter $49,500 Manufacturing / Architecture Aircraft Mechanic $48,900 Engineering Real Estate $48,500 Marketing Appraiser Mechanical Drafter $46,600 STEM Healthcare $43,100 Health Science Practitioner
Highly rigorous career and technical courseshave come a long way since the days ofvocational education. It’s time to take anotherlook at how to best meet the needs of ourstudents and our state, and to work to removethestigma.
After all…27 percentof people with post-secondarylicenses or certificates earn morethan the average bachelor’sdegree recipient. Source: Pathways to Prosperity, Harvard Graduate School of Education, 2011