Structured vocational education keeps boys from dropping out of high school, said James Stone III, director of the National Research Center of Career and Technical Education at the University of Louisville, at a conference.
Earning three or more CTE credits within a focused sequence of courses was second only to 9th grade students’ grade point average as the strongest variable affecting high school survival for boys. While CTE “did no harm” to girls’ high school engagement, it did not produce a similar positive effect on females.
Stone describes the effect of career tech as “stunning,” reports Ed Week.
“We have a boy problem,” Stone said. “Boys are less likely to finish high school, go to college, finish college, go to graduate school, or finish grad school.” Seventy-five percent of D’s and F’s are given to male students, he said. “We are driving them out. We are not giving them things that engage them.”
“College for all” is narrowing the curriculum, squeezing out courses that motivate many boys, Stone said.