State Policies Impacting CTE: 2016 Year in Review

This paper, produced by Advance CTE and the Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE), is the fourth annual review of Career Technical Education (CTE) and career-readiness policies in the states and territories. The report highlights notable policy changes in each state, including new legislation, board rules, executive actions, governor-led initiatives and ballot measures. While CTE policy stalled on the federal level with an attempted reauthorization of the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act of 2006, states continued to take the lead in shaping CTE in 2016. Across the board, lawmakers and education policymakers sought to develop career pathways for learners of all ages and strengthen the workforce pipeline for employers and industries.
In 2016, 42 states carried out a total of 139 policy actions relevant to CTE — an increase over 2015 activity. Several states passed packages of legislation impacting multiple elements of CTE programming, such as Virginia, California, Indiana and Idaho, while Iowa took a deep dive into redesigning secondary CTE and career development. Funding was the leading category of policies passed in 2016, consistent with the past four years. Other popular policy categories for 2016 include industry partnerships and work-based learning; dual and concurrent enrollment, articulation and early college; and industry-recognized credentials. 
Reports for previous years can be found here. Advance CTE members can download the 2016 State Policy Tracker and view these policies in further detail.