Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act, a bipartisan update on the Perkins Act, is moving through Congress. Among other things, the bill is supposed to give states more flexibility and less paperwork.
Bureaucracy isn’t just a federal program, writes Monica Disare on Chalkbeat. In New York, it takes four to six years for schools to get state approval for a multi-year career-focused curriculum.
The delay turns off business partners and makes it hard to match career courses to new job markets. “If schools choose to forgo the certification process, they may have a tougher time securing federal funding and cannot provide their students with a CTE-endorsed diploma,” reports Disare.
At New York City’s Urban Assembly Maker Academy, Principal Luke Bauer wanted to start a program in “interaction design,” which focuses on how users interact with technology, writes Disare. Industry partners hoped it would lead some of his students to full-time jobs. But “the idea didn’t fit into any of the typical categories approved by New York state,” and getting approval was too difficult.
State certification requirements also make it hard to find CTE teachers — especially in emerging fields.