Sunday, July 15, 2012

2011-12 CTE Common Checklist Required Blog Postings

CTE Mentoring Project Reflection:
I found the CTE Administration Mentoring Program to be an extremely beneficial experience throughout my first year as a district CTE Coordinator. We met three times as a collective group which included new CTE administrators,  retired CTE administrators, and CCCS CTE staff. In addition to group meetings, my assigned mentor met with me at my work site to help me plan and answer questions about upcoming state reporting and Perkins grant administration. Because CTE administration is a large undertaking, I felt the meeting dates were well planned so time sensitive tasks could be addressed at the appropriate time of the school year.

I felt the most significant mentoring meeting was the one held at the CACTA conference in February 2012. The CCCS directors that handle Perkins, CTA and VE 135 reporting presented us with important information imperative to completing the grant and reports correctly. The other mentees and were able to get clarification and discuss potential issues that may arise when compiling information. I only wish we had more time with each director individually. If resources and time were plentiful, planning mentee-only work sessions to work on a portion of a Perkins Action step, VE 135 enrollment report, or CTA report would be helpful, even if it was a simulation versus using actual district data.  The greatest, long lasting benefit of this program is the amazing network of other administrators and important CTE personnel you establish during the process, and, as this program continues, I only see it getting better and better.

National ACTE Conference-St. Louis, MO Reflection:
This was my first time attending a national CTE conference, and it was a worthwhile experience. I brought 18 of my district's CTE teachers with at least one representative from every high school and every CTE program. Because of the negative effects on CTE from district budget cuts over the last several years, the intent of bringing a large number of teachers to one conference was for capacity building within CTE throughout the district. It allowed me an opportunity to build camaraderie with colleagues while gaining the trust and respect I needed to be a successful CTE administrator.

I attended a pre-conference workshop titled How to Significantly Increase Enrollment, Retention and Graduation Rates With Millennials presented by Mark Perna.  I found this to be extremely enlightening in regards to the way the students of the millenial generation approach their academics, social lives, work experiences, and their futures through a tech savvy lenses.  We need to embrace their need to have constant social connection and that they approach life from a global perspective.  They need a stimulating work environment because experiential learning is what they prefer. Their desires for flexible work hours and more personal time can be seen as lazy or lacking work ethic; however, it gave me a renewed faith that the current and future generations are keeping their lives more balanced.

As a CTE administrator, I tried to attend workshops that pertained to a variety of career cluster areas to gain a better idea of current trends and demands. I specifically found the workshops regarding advisory committees as helpful and provided ideas I shared with all my CTE teachers. Presenting mini-workshops was a requirement of all my teachers who attended the conference. They had to present to all district CTE teachers on a professional development day, January 20, 2012. Most of the teachers partnered up and they had to prepare a presentation that could be taken and applied to any CTE program area. There were a variety of topics that included: iPad/iPhone Apps, Employability Skills, STEM, Critical Thinking in the Classroom, Data Driven Tools, and Successful Advisory Boards. Seeing CTE on the national stage showed me the impact that professional organizations like ACTE have on legislative decision making with their main initiative being to help the nation see the necessity of CTE at the secondary and post-secondary level.

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