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Report Series: Career Technical Education in the California Community Colleges

 

IHELP has worked to call attention to the California Community Colleges’ importance to the state as well as to the need for practice and policy changes to improve student outcomes and student success. These reports are part of a four-part series on career technical education in the California Community Colleges. The project, funded by The James Irvine Foundation, was aimed at identifying ways that state and system policy can best support the CTE mission so that colleges can be more effective in helping students earn credentials of value in the workplace and helping employers and industries in their regions obtain a skilled workforce.

Career Opportunities: Career Technical Education and the College Completion Agenda – Part I: Structure and Funding of Career Technical Education in the California Community College
January 2012
In this first report, researchers describe the complex organizational structure and funding arrangements for the CTE mission and the closely related economic and workforce development mission. Researchers also offer a set of criteria, based on a literature review, that characterize an effective CTE mission and identify five key issues that will need to be addressed as efforts proceed to increase the effectiveness of CTE in the California Community Colleges.

Career Opportunities: Career Technical Education and the College Completion Agenda - Part II: Inventory and Analysis of CTE Programs in the California Community Colleges
February 2012
This report examines the full set of career-technical certificate and associate degree programs offered by the CCC. Researchers inventory and analyze CTE program offerings across the system as a basis for understanding how well the CTE programs are meeting students’ needs to identify, enroll in, and complete programs with real value in today’s labor market. Some of the report findings include: a total of 12,500 local certificate and associate degree programs in 142 fields of study, with an average of 113 programs offered per college; a high concentration of student enrollment and completions in a small portion of fields; an abundance of short-term certificates; and considerable inconsistency across similar programs (in name, credits, and course requirements). As in the first report, researchers evaluate their findings against a set of criteria, based on a literature review, that characterize an effective CTE mission and identify key issues that will need to be addressed as efforts proceed to increase the effectiveness of CTE in the California Community Colleges.

Career Opportunities: Career Technical Education and the College Completion Agenda – Part III: Promising CTE Policies from Across the States
September 2012
This report examines policies in other states that might offer helpful lessons for shaping CTE in California to better meet student and employer needs. It provides examples in the following five policy areas: degree and certificate programs offered; curriculum structure and delivery; high school – community college – workplace pathways; financing CTE – college and student costs; and accountability. Researchers explain how each policy area relates to an effective CTE program and provide brief descriptions of relevant policies in place in other states with endnotes that provide references to further detail on the policies.

Career Opportunities: Career Technical Education and the College Completion Agenda - Part IV: Aligning Policy with Mission for Better Outcomes
March 2013
This new IHELP report is the culmination of a four-part series on career technical education in the California Community Colleges. The project, funded by The James Irvine Foundation, is aimed at identifying ways that state and system policy can best support the CTE mission so that colleges can be more effective in helping students earn credentials of value in the workplace and helping employers and industries in their regions obtain a skilled workforce.  Based on a comprehensive analysis of potential barriers to more effective CTE, researchers offer a set of suggestions for policy changes intended as a resource for the community college system as it continues to work to improve student success.

State and System Policies Related to Career Technical Education: A Series of Working Papers
November 2012 - February 2013
As part of this project, we have identified a number of problems that we believe could be addressed with selective changes to state laws and regulations. We have explored these policies by various theme in five different working papers. In each paper, we identify several problems, examine laws and regulations related to those problems, and offer suggested policy changes to address them.

State and System Policies Related to Career Technical Education: Program Offerings — a Working Paper

State and System Policies Related to Career Technical Education: Accountability - a Working Paper

State and System Policies Related to Career Technical Education: High School to Community College to Workplace Pathways - a Working Paper

State and System Policies Related to Career Technical Education: Program Structure and Delivery - a Working Paper

State and System Policies Related to Career Technical Education: Faculty Issues - a Working Paper