Week five comes to a close at the Minnesota Legislature
Career and Technical Legislative Education Hearings
This week, the House and Senate Education Committees held three hearings on partnerships between K-12 systems and Minnesota State to advance Career and Technical Education (CTE) programming in high schools and on Minnesota State campuses.
The Senate E-12 Finance Committee, Chaired by Senator Carla Nelson, held two hearings (Monday and Wednesday). Monday’s hearing, attended by Minnesota State Trustee Louise Sundin, focused on Minnesota’s consortium model for secondary/postsecondary delivery of Career and Technical Education. Presenters included Minnesota State’s Jeralyn Jargo, Paula Palmer and Michelle Kamenov from the Minnesota Department of Education, and Local Consortia Leaders and Partners.
The presenters outlined the Minnesota blended CTE delivery system through 26 consortia of post-secondary institutions and K-12 school districts across the state that engaged 246,772 students in 2016. The consortia rely on federal Perkins IV funds and local resources with K-12 partners. The Chair asked the Department of Education representatives whether the Governor’s budget recommendations included any increase for CTE programming. The Department answered that the Governor’s recommendation included a 2% annual general education formula allowance that could be used locally or any priority.
Senator Wiger noted that CTE students display greater persistence to degree among both white students and students of color.
Chair Nelson very impressed with the strong engagement of business partners and their leadership participating in these programs. She expressed some concern as to whether there were waiting lists for students to participate in these programs.
The business partners answered that the most significant constraints on program participation were:
- Academic success issues for participating students outside of the CTE program.
- The demand to recruit and retain qualified teachers.
- The predominance of a “four year college” mind-set in the K-12 system.
The Senate E-12 Finance Committee’s hearing on Wednesday provided and overview of work-based learning programs and partnerships led again by Minnesota State’s Jeralyn Jargo and Anoka Hennepin Director of Career and Technical Education Jessica Lipa.
The hearing also featured a presentation on the C-Tech Initiative between RCTC and the Rochester Public Schools. Interim President Mary Davenport, Rochester Public Schools Superintendent Michael Munoz and local business partners showcased this innovative partnership’s success at aligning local resources and leadership to support the production of skilled workers for the local economy.
Finally, Thursday, February 2, the House Education Innovation and Policy committee heard the report of the Career and Technical Educator Licensing Advisory Taskforce. The taskforce, established by the 2016 Legislature was charged to provide recommendations on how to increase the supply of licensed CTE educators. Minnesota is experiencing a shortage of licensed CTE teachers driven by three factors: increased demand for CTE courses; retirement of current CTE licensed professionals and the unsustainability of the traditional CTE licensure pathway.
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