Iowa Secondary Career and Technical Education Task Force
To review secondary career and technical education (CTE) programming and policy and make recommendations to reduce skill shortages, enhance economic growth and ensure all students have access to high quality, globally competitive CTE programs. The task force shall consider measures to ensure rigorous standards, consistency in program quality, alignment with post-secondary programs leading to middle skill occupations and family sustaining wages, responsiveness to labor market needs, robust business and industry participation on advisory committees, and efficient delivery of programming.
The global economy is increasingly driven by knowledge and innovation and, in the aggregate, the jobs being created today require a much higher skill level than in the past. Technological change and globalization have eliminated many traditional pathways for diligent low-skill Iowans to enter the middle class. The demand for middle skill workers (for lack of a better term) is expected to grow and outstrip supply. In some sectors, education and skill gaps are already causing essential positions to be left vacant, hampering economic growth. At the same time, hardworking Iowans are left without jobs or in jobs without family-sustaining wages. There’s a mismatch between the qualifications required for many openings and the education and training of Iowans. CTE is uniquely positioned to prepare middle skill workers and to sharpen the state’s competitive edge. Iowa has a rich tradition of delivering CTE through comprehensive high schools; however, state policy is antiquated and Iowa is not maximizing opportunities to deliver globally competitive programming that meets the needs of its students, employers, and communities.
The task force includes members from business and industry, K-12 schools, community colleges, labor, teacher preparation, the community, and school boards. Ex-officio members will include legislators and state agency representatives.
The task force will be convened in December 2013. An interim progress report will be submitted to the state board of education, governor, and legislature by January, 15, 2014. Over the course of 2014, the task force will meet approximately four times. A final report will be submitted by November 1, 2015, although the taskforce may complete its work sooner.
December Meeting Notes (see attached)
Interim Report (see attached)