CTE Mandate Change
On Tuesday, May 9, 2017 the New York State Board of Regents approved an emergency regulation to give schools the flexibility to meet the Technology and Family Consumer Science middle school mandate in new ways. This is not an elimination of the mandate but a change in the existing regulation 100.4. There is currently a mandate in place for one unit of Technology and ¾ unit of Home and Career Skills. The new regulation stipulates that schools that have vacancies in Technology and FACS for the 2017-2018 school year, those schools can provide 1 ¾ units of study in any of the six CTE disciplines which includes Technology Education, FACS, Agriculture, Business, Health Sciences, Trade and Technical Education. In those situations, CTE courses must be taught by person certified to teach in that particular CTE subject area. It is important to reiterate that this is not an elimination of the middle school mandate but a restructuring.
NYSTEEA is working on developing a platform on which members will be asked to use as comments during the 45 day comment period to the Board of Regents.
It is important to NYSTEEA that superintendents and principals understand that this is not an elimination of the mandate. If administrators are happy with their current program they do not have to change anything. You can help with this by letting your principal know that as long as they meet the current regulation they will be in compliance with the NEW regulation.
If they are NOT currently compliant with the 100.4 they must become compliant with the new regulation which provides some flexibility for them. The mandate can only be fulfilled with a CTE certified educator teaching within their content area. This is the silver lining.
There has been a lot of misinformation going around about this item so I thought I would provide some context to the decision that was made.
As recently as the end of March, this item was scheduled for July or September and the summer was to be used to create the content modules by the CTE content areas—to fold everyone into the process.
A statewide conference call was held with representatives of the superintendents and middle-level principals to discuss the elimination of the middle level mandate ALL TOGETHER. The State Education Department presented the Introduction to CTE model as a reason to KEEP the 1 ¾ unit. The Department reverse course during the conference call and decided to support the CTE model while providing some flexibility to administrators.
The current proposal was then scheduled for consideration by the Board of Regents at the May meeting.
It is very important for everyone to realize that this item was “rushed” to accommodate promises made by the Department’s senior managers to superintendents in the field that a regulation change would happen for the 2017-18 academic year. It was proposed as an emergency item because there wasn’t enough time left to follow normal protocol and have change in place for 2017-18 as promised.
Only schools with openings for Technology or FACS for 2017-18 can use the flexibility to hire from the broad CTE pool of which Technology and FACS are a part.
There are not enough Technology and FACS teachers to staff the current openings, let alone those for the Fall. As we know, many districts are out of compliance. This gives districts a chance to hire one of our CTE colleagues to fill positions that will never see a Technology or FACS applicant.
Contractual issues govern staffing in individual districts. We must be mindful that programs do not get cut where teachers are in existence.
The original proposal Unit of Study Requirements for Career and Technical Education in Grades 7 and 8. See it here: https://www.regents.nysed.gov/common/regents/files/517p12a3.pdf
Major reasons why Regents should Vote NO:
1. Lack of Data: The proposal seems to be put together without research or data collection from the field of people that it affects. Why this situation is an emergency & what MUST school districts do is unclear in the proposal.
2. Missing Learning Standard: If a middle school now has the opportunity to offer other CTE programs beside technology education, how will students be exposed to the MST Learning Standards for Technology Education?
3. Teacher Shortage is Not A Good Reason: There are teacher shortages in most subject areas, including CTE. This policy focuses on omitting a subject area because there is a teacher shortage, not what is best for students. This would make it impossible for schools to recruit or grow the teacher pool.
4. Inappropriate Teacher Training: Teacher preparation programs in trade & technical education and health occupations do not require or offer the same pedagogical training that technology education and family and consumer sciences certified teachers receive. Based on the differences in teacher training between these two areas, it is not appropriate to allow teachers certified in technical trades and health occupations to offer an introduction to CTE to middle school students.
Letter from NYSTEEA President
Major Reasons AGAINST Proposal
Specific Reasons AGAINST Proposal