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Is Career Education Making A Comeback?

Some states are looking to reintroduce career education into high schools. Career education, which declined significantly with the changing structures of schools over the last few decades, is beginning to find a very relevant audience again, according to a recent report.

“Decades after ‘shop class’ became known as a lesser alternative for children deemed unfit for college, vocational education is making a comeback in many of the nation’s high schools,” according to the Associated Press.

“States such as California, Colorado and Louisiana are looking to rebranded ‘career pathways’ that combine technical training with academics built around an industry theme as a way to get more young people to pursue some post-secondary education — whether it’s a certificate from a two-year school or a four-year degree.”

In the report, the Associated Press cites one example of an EMT training class. A pair of students show off their skills by going through mock EMT situations and protocols for someone with a broken thighbone.

“Career and technical education is really the perfect blend of the academic, the technical and the employability skills. Students come out college- and career-ready because they have the skills in all these essential areas,” Association for Career and Technical Education Executive Director LeeAnn Wilson said, according to the Associated Press.

According to the report, Congress is endorsing a more hands-on approach to learning, which suits career learning. With the current STEM push in education nationwide, it’s not unrealistic to imagine that the two concentrations could be merged, yielding a higher percentage of students seeking careers in fields like engineering.

After years of funding declines, career education is finding new ways of transforming its model to fit the current K-12 curriculum. It will be interesting to see if this trend extends to other states.

Read the full story here.

Article by Navindra Persaud, Education World Contributor

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