July-August 2009


Welcome to CTE Connections! This will be a bi-monthly update from the CTE Center. We want to keep you posted on legislative news, current events, valuable research studies, resource materials, and, of course, alert you to our own products, resources, and services as they become available. For past postings, please see our archives page.


CTE Center Update


New Faces

The CTE Center welcomes the new Interim State Director for Career and Technical Education, Dr. Angela Meixell. We'd also like to welcome Joyce Clapp, our new Administrative Officer.


Exciting Progress

On June 26, the CTE Center hosted a signing ceremony to acknowledge the dual credit agreements for a marketing program of study between the University of Hawai’i Community College System and the Department of Education. Earning college credits while in high school may be within reach of more Hawai’i students. Learn more about the marketing dual credit articulated program of study.



CTE in the Community


State wins OK for $129 million in Federal Funds for Education

Star Bulletin (7/2, Kubota) Some $129 million in federal money has been approved for public education in Hawaii under President Obama's national economic stimulus plan.  U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan yesterday called the money part of the "single largest boost in education funding in recent history."  The federal stimulus law passed earlier this year provided about $100 billion for education. "Hawaii can now utilize these funds to save jobs and lay the groundwork for a generation of education reform," Duncan said.


The funds were requested as required by Gov. Linda Lingle on June 10 under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.  About 70 percent is expected to go to primary and secondary education and 30 percent for higher education, said Linda Smith, the governor's senior policy adviser.  "We're just pleased that the U.S. Department of Education approved our application so quickly," Smith said.  Smith said the governor's office plans to draft memorandums of agreement with various education entities about the withdrawal of funds.  She said state education officials are required to meet certain goals, when using the funds, such as tracking the academic progress of students.  State education spokeswoman Sandra Goya said the announcement was good news.  "We now anxiously await the transfer of funds to Hawaii's public schools by the governor."  Hawaii is eligible to receive an additional $63 million this fall, federal education officials said.


To date, Hawaii has received $40 million in education stimulus funds, including money to improve the academic achievement of the disadvantaged and individuals with disabilities.


Increasing Access and Expanding Learning Opportunities at Hawai‘i CC

 Kudos to Big Island residents Ronald and Irene Nagata who established an endowed scholarship fund at Hawai'i Community College with a gift of $25,000. The fund will provide financial assistance for tuition, books, equipment, and/or tools of the trade for students in career or technical programs.


“Our family is making this gift to say mahalo to our community for the kokua they gave to us when we first moved back home to Hawai'i," says Irene Nagata. Read the news release.


KCC Tastes National Victory

The Honolulu Advertiser (7/15, Adams) reported that Kapi'olani Community College won a national student culinary competition in Orlando, Florida, on July 14.  The six-student team prevailed over teams from Michigan, North Carolina and Pennsylvania at the American Culinary Federation Student Team National Championships. Four regional winners had advanced to the national competition.


"It is a win that all of Hawai'i can be proud of," Ron Takahashi, chairman of the KCC culinary department, said from Orlando. "It shows how committed the community college system is to excellence in education. It really is a win for all the community colleges, not just KCC."

The four teams each prepared a four-course meal for discerning judges accredited by the American Culinary Federation at its national conference in Orlando.


Teams had three hours and 20 minutes to prep and cook, and 40 minutes to plate up and serve.


"It was brutal," said KCC professor Frank Leake, the team's coach and manager. He and instructor Alan Tsuchiyama had to stand aside and not give any coaching to the team during the competition, but he said the students "maintained their cool. They were able to pull it through."



Legislative Update


Message from Sharon Lee Miller- DATE Director

The Division of Academic and Technical Education (DATE) is pleased to report Perkins IV grant awards for program year three (July 1, 2009- June 30, 2010) were issued to all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Guam, and Puerto Rico. We look forward to continuing work with you to improve the academic and technical skills of students across the nation. Happy New Year!


Brenda Dann-Messier Nominated for Assistant Secretary for Vocational and Adult Education

The White House announced on June 24 its intent to nominate Dr. Brenda Dann-Messier for Assistant Secretary for Vocational and Adult Education.  Dr. Dann-Messier is currently the President of Dorcas Place, and Adulwhitt and Family Learning Center in Providence, Rhode Island.  Prior to working at the Dorcas, she worked at the Northeast and Islands Regional Educational Laboratory at Brown University and received her BA and M.Ed from Rhode Island College and her Ed.D in Educational Leadership from Johnson and Wales University.


House Finalizing Appropriations Bill-- Senate's Process Begins    

On Friday, July 17, 2009, the full House Appropriations Committee is expected to finalize its Fiscal Year (FY) 2010 funding bill for the programs housed under the departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education. Soon after, the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education will begin work on its specific allocations for this fiscal year. This Senate action is currently scheduled to begin on Tuesday, July 28, 2009. 


Initial work on the Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations bill in the House appears to have funded Perkins at the FY 2009 level, which is $42 million below FY 2002. For more information on the subcommittee's process and allocations please see the funding news tab on ACTE's Web site.   Final funding decisions will be made in the House and Senate in the next few weeks.


Publications and Research


A report from the President's Council of Economic Advisers - Preparing the Workers of Today for the Jobs of Tomorrow

July, 2009- The President's Council of Economic Advisers (CEA) released it’s report Preparing the Workers of Today for the Jobs of Tomorrow, which highlights important attributes of a well-functioning education and training system that can provide U.S. workers with the skills needed for current jobs as well as those that will be created as a result of the Recovery Act and economic growth over the next decade. Projections include:

  • Health care is forecasted to remain a large source of job growth in the labor market.

        The long-term trend toward more employment in health care is expected to continue, with health care occupations, including medical  

        records and health information technician, registered nurses, clinical laboratory technician, and physical therapist, expected to grow.

  • The decades-long decline in the share of workers that are employed in manufacturing is expected to moderate.   Some industries within manufacturing – such as aerospace and pharmaceuticals – are projected to create many jobs.
  • The construction industry is projected to eventually recover and add jobs in the coming decade.  This rebuilding would generate a demand for skilled workers such as electricians and plumbers.



CTE Around the Country


Mobile Labs Hope To Attract Students To STEM Courses.

Sci-Tech Today (6/10, Unze) reported that, in seeking to interest young students in science, Carl Franzblau, professor and chairman of the Department of Biochemistry at Boston University Medical School, took inspiration from bloodmobiles. The resulting mobile science labs are "expanding across the USA," and are seen as "an important tool in attracting young people to the so-called STEM courses." The mobile labs "are buses or semis outfitted with the basics of science education: electricity, distilled water, freezers and refrigerators, scales, microscopes and even computer systems in some cases," and "are designed to travel to schools that don't have the resources to teach modern science to students." However, Franzblau added, "they also are crucial in providing training to teachers in a field that can see a new discovery change curriculums overnight." The article noted, "Other mobile lab programs exist in Connecticut, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Maryland, North Carolina, Georgia, South Dakota and Texas."


Five States Chosen to Receive Technical Assistance in Developing ‘Green’ Programs of Study


The National Research Center for Career and Technical Education (NRCCTE), as a part of its cooperative agreement with OVAE, announced the selection of five states to receive technical assistance to develop green-focused programs of study (POS).  The states and areas in which they have proposed to develop POS are:

  • Georgia- energy, construction, and transportation

  • Illinois- energy, utilities, and waste management

  • New Jersey- various industries

  • Ohio- energy, biotech, and agriculture

  • Oregon- wind, solar and construction


Frisco CTE Center Benefits From Community, Local Business Ties.

The Dallas Morning News (7/12, Meyers) reported on the Frisco Career and Technical Education Center, "a professional-environment-meets-classroom and a testament to the latest trend in career-focused education" that "houses a full-service restaurant, a bank, a courtroom, a convenience store and a broadcast studio." Students who attend class at the center "can take courses for college credit in engineering graphics and accounting while still attending their regular high school." Of the school's most recent class of students, "93 percent...are going to college," while "4 percent selected technical school." Principal Wes Cunningham explained, "When I grew up, vocational education was targeted at students who were not going to college. ... Now it's connected to higher education." While "most schools have some type of career and technical program," few are said to have the center's "investment capabilities or buy-in from the community and local businesses to develop a program that offers more than 10 academies and draws area professionals to teach and guest lecture."



National News


Would You Teach Here for $125,000?

The New York Times (6/4, Gootman) reported that the Equity Project Charter School in New York City’s Washington Heights will open this fall with 120 5th graders chosen by lottery. Preference was given to students from surrounding neighborhoods and to weak academic performers. Most children will be from low-income Hispanic families. The school will grow to 480 children in Grades 5 to 8, with 28 teachers. The eight teachers who will open the school were selected in a nationwide search and will be paid a $125,000 annual salary, with potential bonuses in the second year. Read Education Week’s John Norton’s commentary and teachers’ reactions.


President Obama Announces Major Community College Initiative


President Obama announced his $12 billion plan  for American community colleges on July 14, in a speech on the American Graduation Initiative, calling for an additional 5 million community college graduates–both degree and certificate earners–by 2020 and new initiatives to teach adults the skills they need to ensure America’s economic strength in an increasingly competitive world economy. This unprecedented support for community colleges will help rebuild the capacity and competitiveness of America’s workforce. The new program is designed to improve graduation rates, modernize facilities and create new online learning opportunities in community colleges over the next 10 years. Funds for the program are slated to come from savings from the administration’s proposed student loan reforms, which Congress is expected to consider soon. Adult educators will want to know about new opportunities the initiative offers. Highlights appear below.


Plan Creates Community College Fund

New competitive grants from the $9 billion Community College Challenge Fund will enable community colleges and states to innovate and expand proven reforms during the next decade. Also, colleges could, for example:

  • Build Partnerships with businesses and the workforce investment system to create career pathways to help workers earn new credentials and promotions step-by-step, or create worksite education programs to build basic skills and curricula coordinated with internships and job placements
  • Improve remedial and adult education programs, accelerating students' progress and integrating developmental classes into academic and vocational classes.


Online Skills Lab To Provide Free College Courses

The plan will invest $50 million annually for 10 years in an online skills laboratory. The departments of Defense, Education and Labor will work together to make new state-of-the-art online courses freely available through one or more community colleges and the Defense Department's distributed learning network.  The agencies will explore ways to award academic credit based on achievement rather than class hours, and rigorously evaluate the results.  Teams of experts in subject matter, teaching and technology applications will create the open online courses based on research into effective teaching practices, understanding of how students learn and the very best content in the field.  Private online providers also will be free to uses these courses.




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