ACTE and Advance CTE Release Ninth Annual Report Examining State CTE Policies

February 9, 2022 

Contact: Jori Houck 

ACTE and Advance CTE Release Ninth Annual Report Examining State CTE Policies 

Alexandria, VA – In 2021, career and technical education (CTE) continued to adapt to challenges brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic while delivering high-quality programming nationwide across all learner levels. CTE also remained at the forefront of state CTE policy, with 41 states enacting or passing 138 CTE-related policy actions. Today, Advance CTE and the Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE), with research support from the Education Commission of the States, released their ninth annual report, State Policies Impacting CTE: 2021 Year in Review. 

This report highlights major trends in CTE and career readiness policymaking, and includes a companion online state policy tracker that tracks and analyzes legislative actions by state and content area. In the second year of the pandemic, states moved past the temporary emergency actions deployed in 2020 to make strategic education and workforce investments in response to ongoing stressors impacting schools, colleges and the labor market. As a result, this past year saw a return to a more typical volume of CTE-related state policy actions. In 2021, state policy most frequently addressed funding, access and equity, and data, reporting and/or accountability. 

This year, some states chose to dedicate American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA); Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act; Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act (CRRSAA) and other state fiscal recovery funding to investments in job training programs, learner re-engagement strategies and institutional support for CTE providers. With unprecedented investments from federal stimulus funding, states were able to lessen the impact that the coronavirus had on CTE and education in their state more broadly. 

“CTE programs continue to adapt to the needs of learners and the changing economy, but quality and equity have remained top of mind for CTE policies enacted this year,” said LeAnn Wilson, ACTE Executive Director. “These CTE-related policies will be critical to providing career exploration opportunities and preparing learners to fill in-demand, high-skill and high-wage occupations, and they are instrumental to getting the economy and workforce back on track. As we continue to navigate challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, high-quality CTE programs are more important and needed now more than ever.” 

Advance CTE and ACTE will hold an accompanying webinar with selected state leaders to review key findings from the report on Tuesday, February 15 from 1:00pm – 2:00pm ET. You can register for the webinar here. 


About Advance CTE 

Advance CTE is the longest-standing national non-profit that represents State Directors and state leaders responsible for secondary, postsecondary and adult Career Technical Education (CTE) across all 50 states and U.S. territories. Established in 1920, Advance CTE supports visionary state leadership, cultivates best practices and speaks with a collective voice to advance high-quality CTE policies, programs and pathways that ensure career success for each learner. 

About ACTE 

The Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE) is the nation’s largest not-for-profit association committed to the advancement of education that prepares youth and adults for successful careers. ACTE represents the community of CTE professionals, including educators, administrators, researchers, school counselors, guidance and career development professionals and others at all levels of education. ACTE is committed to excellence in providing advocacy, public awareness and access to resources, professional development and leadership opportunities.