Input Needed for Career and Technical Education

January 21, 2020 01:10 PM
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Input sought on draft plan to meet federal career and technical education law

Statewide meetings set for Feb. 6; online feedback accepted through Feb. 13

Iowa Department of Education Director Ryan Wise today announced that the draft of Iowa’s state plan for meeting requirements of the federal Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act is available for public review and comment.

Commonly referred to as Perkins V, the federal law reauthorizes the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act of 2006, which provides almost $1.2 billion in federal support for career and technical education (CTE) programs in all 50 states and U.S. territories, including support for integrated career pathway programs for students.

Iowa receives nearly $12 million annually in federal Perkins funds, divided between secondary and postsecondary CTE programs delivered through public school districts and community colleges. CTE programs increase student engagement through the integration of technical and academic skills in hands-on, real-world learning experiences.

“This federal law aligns well with our new state standards and efforts already underway to expand access to high-quality CTE programs and better prepare students for higher-level academic and technical training,” Wise said. “Iowa’s plan creates efficiencies, broadens opportunities for students and educators and positions CTE as a driving force for education, workforce and economic development.”

The Department has received input on development of the plan through a state advisory council, education work teams and written comments.

The draft of Iowa’s state plan released today incorporates this input and includes strategies for addressing the following new key priorities:

  • Expanding high-quality CTE programs to middle school students.
  • Focusing on teacher recruitment, retention and professional development, particularly in the area of work-based learning.
  • Growing career and technical student organizations across the state to enhance classroom learning through real-world experiences.

These efforts support Iowa’s Future Ready Iowa initiative, which focuses on ensuring Iowa’s workforce is equipped with the skills and education that employers need.

Iowans are invited to give feedback on the state plan, and the related secondary and postsecondary accountability performance targets, through two online surveys, which are open through Feb 13. In addition, three town hall meetings will be held in Cedar Rapids, Council Bluffs and Johnston from 4:30-6:30 p.m. on Feb. 6. Those who are unable to attend the town hall meetings can tune in online for an overview of the draft plan and can provide written feedback through the online survey.

Feedback also can be submitted by mail: Iowa Department of Education, Attn: Eric St Clair/PerkinsV Feedback, Grimes State Office Building, 400 E. 14th St., Des Moines, IA 50319-0146.

Comments will be considered in the final state plan, which will be presented to Gov. Kim Reynolds for approval prior to submission to the U.S. Department of Education in April.

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