The Powers the Be

I just came from a meeting with my state senator, Greg Taylor, about CTE and ways that he and our
senate can support us. It was a very good meeting indeed. Sen. Taylor is very supportive of education and realizes the value of career and technical education, but was not very knowledgeable of the process and the student body we serve today.

I shared with him how CTE has evolved from the vocational classes of old to the new broad scope of today’s CTE. We swapped stories of what we remember of vocational education we knew when we were in school and I told him of the diversity now offered in CTE. He was excited to learn there was strong documentation of the success of CTE in preparing students for the workforce and postsecondary learning.

I also shared the financial outlook for CTE with sequestration and how much we have lost prior to this year’s budget. He was unaware of Perkins funding and wanted more information on that, as well. I assured him I could provide him with all of the documentation needed and then proceeded to e-mail people to help me fulfill my promise!

Sen. Taylor has a history in our state of being a strong supporter of education and pledged to continue that fight for educators and children. Our governor, Mike Pence, is supportive of CTE (even though he still calls it vocational education). Sen. Taylor even suggested we may be able to set up a meeting with Gov. Pence, Glenda Ritz (our superintendent of education), himself and me to discuss the future of CTE and how it can continue to be supported. I came away from our meeting very excited and anxious to begin a new partnership!

Kandy Smitha is an ACTE Fellow from Region II.