Advance CTE Fall Meeting Sponsor Blog: Gold Sponsor, NOCTI – Navigating Uncertain Times

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Advance CTE Fall Meeting Sponsor Blog: Gold Sponsor, NOCTI – Navigating Uncertain Times

This post is written by NOCTI, a Gold Level sponsor of the 2022 Advance CTE Fall Meeting.
A “black swan” event is an unpredictable occurrence beyond what is normally expected of a situation, often with severe consequences. While the entire educational environment was impacted by the coronavirus pandemic, Career Technical Education (CTE), which focuses on hands-on learning, was heavily impacted by this black swan event.  In addition to navigating the perils of COVID-19, CTE experienced instructor shortages and concerns about the limited related work experience of those available for these positions. Though many states have relevant, standardized, industry-identified competencies, the associated curriculum must be delivered by individuals with a solid understanding of the field, which is generally based on work experience. In some cases, these concerns can result in a reduction of content depth delivered in a CTE classroom. 
How does the CTE community respond to these kinds of events? What can states, teacher preparation systems, schools, and administrators do to increase equity and access to CTE programs as well as maintain high-quality program content and delivery? To address these variables would take more space than this blog offers, but we can describe three tools offered by NOCTI and Nocti Business Solutions (NBS). 
Let’s start with a focus on a teacher candidate’s technical skill competence. NBS offers assessments that are used in the hiring process. These assessments can be used to verify a candidate’s experience, determine a candidate’s fit to a position, and establish an employee’s professional development plan upon hire. Using these assessments longitudinally can provide additional information to those hiring CTE teachers.
The second tool is a credentialing assessment developed by NOCTI and several other associations, entitled “Principles of CTE Teaching”. The credential offers two levels and establishes an individual’s understanding of CTE pedagogy and covers student management techniques, facility management and safety, teaching, and both formative and summative assessment strategies. 
The final tool developed by NOCTI, micro-credentials, gathers the collective knowledge of seasoned CTE instructors and subject matter experts. NOCTI utilized longitudinal data across a variety of industries to identify areas in which CTE learners were having difficulty. NOCTI then worked with instructors to design short video segments to address these specific areas. The resulting content segments are available 24/7 and can be viewed repeatedly in both synchronous and asynchronous settings. Micro-credentials can be used in a variety of situations and can be an effective tool to reinforce an instructor’s content knowledge. 
Acting without deliberate planning can exacerbate problems and pondering an issue without action rarely helps anyone progress. NOCTI’s tools were designed to assist in the expansion of the CTE community and represent thoughtful actions to inspire state CTE leaders to address instructor pipeline challenges and empower new instructors to be successful in CTE.  Please reach out to us to find out more at nocti@nocti.org.
Dr. John C. Foster, President and CEO, NOCTI & NBS