Magazine article Vocational Education Journal

It's Been a Very Good Year

Magazine article Vocational Education Journal

It's Been a Very Good Year

Article excerpt

I can't believe my year as president is almost over. A lot has been accomplished this year through the hard work of your Executive Committee, Board of Directors, dedicated staff and, above all, our members. I want to extend my personal thanks to each and every one of you. The most satisfying personal aspect of my term has been the friendships I have developed across the nation with people who have a strong focus on delivering quality vocational-technical education to students-whether they're 6 or 66.

Even though AVA can be proud of its record in the last year, there's still much more to do. Our association is only as strong as our members' involvement. The tenets of continuous improvement dictate that our work to develop a system based on the needs of our customers never will be finished. It is up to each one of us to be actively involved at the local, state, regional and national levels if AVA is to accomplish its mission.

I'd like to recap some of the highlights of the association's activities this year.

AVA led an effort to form an education coalition to support vocational-technical education. In response to a flurry of federal activity as Congress debated block grants for vocational education, AVA convened a meeting of advocates for the major education organizations in the Washington, D.C., area. With overwhelming enthusiasm, the group agreed that it needed a unified voice to convey vocational-technical interests on Capitol Hill. The coalition advocated a core set of principals for block grants, developed strategies and met regularly to share information. Members then met with senators, representatives, congressional staff and officials from the Clinton administration. Since the first meeting, the group has evolved into an active coalition of 30 individuals who represent 26 organizations for students, parents, teachers, school administrators, principals, school board members, community colleges and state education officials. These individuals care about the future of students who seek secondary and postsecondary vocational education opportunities.

I am very proud of the strategic plan developed by the AVA Board of Directors. It is a dynamic document that will change as needed to meet the challenges of new technology and new knowledge. The goals that follow are the major objectives that lay the groundwork for achieving AVA's mission.

Goal 1: Establish workforce education as an integral component of education for all students. Goal 2: Be the leading advocate for public policies that benefit workforce education. Goal 3: Lead in the development of a continuous quality system for preparing all learners for a world-class workforce. …

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