With fair funding, career and technical programs can contribute to labor shortages:

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Committee discusses supplementary budget requests for the legislature, data on double credit enrollment

FRANKFORT, Ky. (WTVQ) – State vocational and technical education programs can play an important role in addressing long-term labor shortages.

Members of the Kentucky Department of Education’s Technical and Vocational Education Office recently met with the 2021 Budget Review Subcommittee on Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Protection on how CTE students can help alleviate Kentucky’s labor shortage.

“K-12 CTE provides students to fill these jobs and vacancies after graduation,” said David Horseman, KDE associate commissioner at OCTE.

Horseman said the fundraising conversations have been reignited. In 2019, a joint working group of the two chambers of the legislature had a series of discussions on the financing of the CTE which lasted 6 months. The working group chose to continue discussions at a later date to clarify some questions about who gets the funding.

CTE is currently delivered through state-run regional technology centers, locally managed vocational and technical centers (CTCs) governed by a local school district and local vocational centers (LAVEC), a school governed by the district that receives additional state funding.

“This year we’ve had conversations with a few people from (Kentucky) House. … [We are] going through the whole process and letting them know about any funding issues, ”Horseman said. “These conversations went very well.”

Due to existing laws, regulations, and funding levels, several locally run CTE programs, such as LAVEC, are unfunded and are unfair in terms of the programs available to students. There are also CTE programs and centers that do not receive any additional funding. Horseman said the goal is to move to a full-time equivalent student model – the money follows the student.

“It doesn’t matter where you teach CTE, be it in a center or high school, local or ATC, [all] should receive fair funding, ”Horseman said.

In order to achieve fairer funding, KDE has proposed three Supplementary Budget Requests (ABRs) for the 2022 legislative session. KDE is requesting $ 3 million to cover ATC’s equipment needs and operating costs, $ 6 million to add funding for nine to 13 currently unfunded LAVECs and $ 500,000 to cover TAC state employee retirement and separation benefits.

Education Commissioner Jason E. Glass echoed Horseman’s concerns about the funding structure in his update and said, “There is work to be done.

“[We need to be] adequately fund CTE so that it has the capacity to deliver the kind of experiences our students need to be competitive in a global workforce, ”he said.

Double credit data sharing

OCTE Data Manager Scott U’Sellis shared CTE’s double credit and double credit enrollment data with the committee for the 2020-2021 school year. CTE double credit courses are non-general education courses where students can earn college and high school credits at the same time. CTE courses are typically technical courses such as health sciences, information technology, and engineering.

In the 2020-2021 school year, there were 78,890 total double-credit enrollments. This number is determined by the unique number of registrations and not of students. If a student is enrolled in three double credit classes, he will count as three enrollments.

Of all double credit registrations, 31.9% of the registrations were CTE double credit registrations. This is a slight increase from the 2019-2020 school year, when CTE enrollments represented 31.4% of double credit enrollments.

Over 30 higher education partners participate in the Double Credit Scholarship Programs and the Kentucky Work Ready Scholarship. Administered by the Kentucky Higher Education Assistance Authority, the scholarships help students taking dual credit courses at a participating Kentucky college or university. Eligible students can receive scholarships for a maximum of two courses using the Double Credit Scholarship and for a maximum of two technical courses per academic year using the Kentucky Work Ready Scholarship. U’Sellis noted that other universities may also offer double credit, but do not participate in the program.

For the 2020-2021 school year, 169 of the state’s 171 districts had students enrolled in dual credit courses and 158 districts had students enrolled in double credit CTE courses. U’Sellis said OCTE is actively looking for ways to involve all Commonwealth counties.

U’Sellis also shared the Report card data and applauded the way it presents the types of students affected by CTE. Over 36,000 high school students participated in the double credit during the 2020-2021 school year. Highlighting a small part of the report, he pointed out that there is a 7% gap between the number of high school students enrolled in double credit courses, with more female students taking and completing courses. than male students.

The committee also:

  • Heard from Leslie Slaughter, OCTE Executive Advisor, about the new logo, slogan and rollout of our plans for CTE marketing. Slaughter also gave the group an update on an exciting new career guidance tool that is in development;
  • Heard by Beth Hargis, OCTE Division Director, on some of the successful achievements of students in CTA. Hargis also spoke of companies that have donated to the programs;
  • Heard by Pamela Moore, OCTE Division Director, on the success of CTE student organizations in national competitions this year.


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