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CTE Policy Watch

Determining High-quality Career Pathways


March 25, 2013

By: Catherine

Career pathways are a key aspect of the college and career readiness conversation, and a number of stakeholders and organizations are taking part in the dialogue. One such organization is the Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP) and its Alliance for Quality Career Pathways, a two-year initiative to identify criteria and measurement for high-quality career pathway systems. A recent publication sets out the Alliance's definition of career pathways and its plan to develop a framework for evaluating career pathways.

An Alliance-defined career pathway includes:

  • A well-articulated sequence of education and training offerings
  • Multiple entry points for participants with differing skill levels, including low-skilled youth and adults
  • Multiple exit points aligned with marketable, stackable credentials
  • Support services

Ten states are currently participating in the Alliance: Arkansas, California, Illinois, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Oregon, Virginia, Washington and Wisconsin. Over two years, the project will develop, through consensus, a framework of criteria and shared performance metrics for high-quality state and local/regional career pathways. The Alliance has also released another working paper that goes further in depth into career pathways measurement and metrics.

Learn more about approaches to career pathways shared during ACTE's 2013 National Policy Seminar and read a joint letter on career pathways from U.S. Departments of Education, Health and Human Services, and Labor.

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