One of the core components of a high-quality Career Technical Education (CTE) program is that it culminates in a credential of value. But with more than 4,000 credentialing organizations in the United States today, states are grappling with the challenge of narrowing down the field.
This policy brief from Advance CTE is designed to help states get started in this work. The paper is the latest release under the New Skills for Youth initiative, a partnership of the Council of Chief State School Officers, Advance CTE and the Education Strategy Group, generously funded by JPMorgan Chase & Co. The paper highlights promising practices from Florida, Kansas and Louisiana, which have each made considerable progress developing a system for students and employers to navigate the tangled universe of credentials. The brief further describes how each state tackles the challenge in a different way, building a system that suits their local economy and context, and highlights a few common strategies. Those strategies include:
- Business and industry is brought in early.
- The credential review process involves a concerted, cross-institutional effort.
- Credentials are differentiated based on rigor and industry demand.
- Systems are designed to be adaptive.