Total CTE Program Model Makes CTE the Answer

Article excerpt

WHAT IS THE GOAL OF EDUCATION IN THE EYES OF PARENTS?

Most would say, "The best education possible for my child." What is the goal of education in the eyes of business and community members? Most would say, "To make children valuable contributors to our economy." What is the ambition of educators? Most would say. 'LTo provide the best educational opportunities for students to succeed "So what is the answer to all of these questions? Career and technical education (CTE) is the answer.

In a January 2007 'Techniques article, "The Premier Educational Delivery System," by Elliot and Deimler, CTE was labeled as having a premier educational delivery system because it provides a range of learning, depth of skill and application of principles as demonstrated in Figure 1.

Another way of saying this is that CTE provides comprehensive education through the Total CTE Program Model (see Figure 2). The Total CTE Program Model includes six parts:

[FIGURE 2 OMITTED]

* Integration

* Rigorous classroom instruction

* Hands-on laboratory instruction

* Relevant work-based learning

* Personal and leadership development through Career and Technical Student Organizations (CTSOs)

* Relationships with partners

Integration

Integration is interpreted in many different ways. Integration, in this case, is the incorporation of core skills--language, science, mathematics, social studies and/or the incorporation of career skills. Integration can also be the incorporation of teams of teachers in a smaller learning community or academy based on student interests across career clusters. Within CTE courses, students don't ask the question, "Why are we learning this?" They can see the Pythagorean Theory in plumbing a wall, the purpose of an outline when giving a speech, technical writing in a lab report or business plan, biological functions in curing diseases, or the economic, theory in practice while creating a marketing plan. The answer is obvious to its application and relevance when students see them in real-world contexts.

Figure 1: Premier Educational Delivery System

  Delivery           Content          Application       Motivation
  Efforts

 Career and         Technical         Experimental     Personal and
 Technical    Instruction(classroom)  Development       Leadership
 Education                            (Laboratory      Development
                                          and       [Intra-curricular]
                                       Work-based      (CTE Student
                                       Learning,      Organization)
                                       including
                                      educational
                                      home visits)

 Domains of         Cognitive         Psychomotor       Affective
  Learning

7 Habits of         Knowledge            Skill            Desire
   highly
 Effective
  People,
 Stephen R
   Covey

 Center for         Academics            Skill      Character Building
Occupational                           Building,
Research and                            Hands-on
Development
   (CORD)

  National            Rigor            Relevance       Relationship
 Governors
Association
Educational
    Plan

  Academic      Content Delivered         Not         Not Applicable
   Class                               Applicable        Usually
                                        Usually

Rigorous Instruction

In CTE, a coherent sequence of study is rigorous classroom instruction that includes conversations about industry standards, technical skills and being a contributor within a team. …