UFT 2019 – Greatly Increase Career & Technical Education

Many of our members who are CTE certified have been wondering why they can’t be placed.  While many schools have CTE classes, they are not necessarily state certified as a CTE program.  To be a state certified program, it’s necessary to have a succession of classes that leads to a certificate upon graduation.  That means seven additional credits at the end of four years.

Schools are getting around not hiring CTE teachers because the school is offering the courses as an “elective”.  A student may take one elective from a CTE course and then not continue.  This hurts the students in two ways.

First, any teacher; under our current contract, can teach two classes out of license.  There are many Social Studies teachers teaching accounting, finance and marketing courses, which are necessary through the National Academy of Finance CTE curriculum.  It’s a cycle.  The DOE stopped giving CTE licenses; schools couldn’t find the appropriate teachers; classes went to those teachers available; and the CTE programs went away. Now it’s all individual classes. But not state certified.

Since the program isn’t state certified, the school loses money by not receiving Perkins funding.  Slap number 2 to the students.

We now have students who are obese; diabetic; and not aware of dietary requirements and/or needs.  What happened to the culinary classes?  Why is the Culinary Institute of America one of the premier culinary schools in our country, yet the public schools refuse to teach or introduce students to culinary practices?

Wharton?  Premier business school.  No business classes being taught in public schools.  Why?

I can ask the same about “Girls Who Code” program.

Did you know that Brooklyn Tech has the most CTE programs of schools in New York City?  And here’s how those students benefit.  Students take the required electives in their major – engineering; building construction; animation; or any one of six different majors.  The school applies for Perkins funding or VTEA (Vocational and Technical Act Programs) which supplements their technical programs.  Examples are funding for instructors, laboratory assistants, student tutoring, and necessary equipment and supplies.  Each year the schools must submit a proposal about how they will use the funds.  Further, all schools who receive these funds must comply with information requirements including the submission of interim and final reports.  They must also present numerical data on how well their students are performing.  In reality, the administration is keeping their school on the forefront of learning.  They obtain additional money every year to upgrade and update their curriculum.

Chancellor Farina has said that CTE is making a comeback.  She wanted it in all the schools.  What she didn’t specify is that she’s going to use teaching assistants to fill the role of the CTE teacher. On November 28 of this year, Schools Chancellor Richard A. Carranza announced 47 new Career and Technical Education (CTE) programs have opened over the 2016-17, 2017-18, and current school year, exceeding the originally announced target of 40 programs. These new programs are part of the City’s larger multi-year $113 million investment in CTE, and there are now 301 CTE programs across 135 schools, reaching approximately 64,000 high school students. UFT Solidarity wants to know, who will be teaching these classes?

There are lots of CTE teachers in the ATR pool. Can’t you (Chancellor) file for VTEA or Perkins funding and educate those teachers who are CTE certified and willing to go the additional mile to retain a teaching position? UFT Solidarity is ready to meet with State and City officials to find a way to get the CTE ATR’s back in the classroom.  Right now, the City plans to use SVA (Success Via Apprenticeship) teachers also to fill these spots.  Again, Chancellor, if you are willing to take a chance on young people who have technical skills; shouldn’t you be willing to take a chance on an experienced teacher who has classroom management skills?

UFT Solidarity plans on getting answers to these questions and future plans so that we can address the needs of the current ATR’s and others that might be added to the pool. For more information, check out VP for CTE High Schools Judeth Napoli’s statement on the value of CTE schools.

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