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Advocacy & Legislative Updates

Welcome to the SkillsUSA Champions Advocacy page, a new feature on our website. As a service to our members and partners, SkillsUSA is introducing this dynamic communications tool for contacting federal policymakers in Congress and the administration. The site can also be used for contacting the local news media.

Access the Advocacy site.

Champions at Work

Tim Lawrence Congressional Testimony
SkillsUSA Executive Director Tim Lawrence attended a congressional briefing on July 23, 2013. It was held to inform congressional offices about multiple educational pathways for students and the critical role that CTE and career counseling plays in student success and in transitioning students to postsecondary education. In attendance was Rep. Jim Langevin (R.I.) as well as other presenters.


CTSO State Fliers
The nine CTSOs have created a set of fliers to help with CTE advocacy in each state.

Each contains a one-page flier for the entire state for senators and governors. The document also includes pages for each congressional district in that state.

All contain the same message just different membership numbers depending on whether it’s listing a state membership or membership for a specific congressional district. You can download them here.

CTE: Learning That Works for America
The National Association of State Directors of Career Technical Education Consortium (NASDCTEc), in cooperation with other organizations in the career and technical education (CTE) community, has developed a new logo and slogan for career and technical education. Read more.

Skills For America's Future
At Northern Virginia Community College, President Obama announced a major expansion of Skills for America's Future, an industry led initiative to dramatically improve industry partnerships with community colleges and build a nation-wide network to maximize workforce development strategies, job training programs, and job placements. Read more.

NASDCTEc 2010 Vision Paper
In March, the National Association of State Directors of Career Technical Education Consortium unveiled a new vision paper -- Reflect, Transform, Lead: A New Vision for Career Technical Education. The vision paper is intended to serve as a guiding document to plan for the future of CTE. It is framed by five core principles and includes a set of specific action steps for each of the principles.

This paper was created over the course of several months. NASDCTEc members, the CTE community – including ACTE and the CTSOs – and other education stakeholders such as the National Governors Association engaged in lengthy and sometimes even tense discussions to arrive at this vision. NASDCTEc strived to be bold and progressive there were some tough conversations about CTE’s role in the past, its status today and, most importantly, what it should be in the future. We arrived at a vision that we believe brings the entire CTE community to a new level of commitment to prepare all students for the global economy. Download it here.

ACTE Announces “Career Ready” Definition
ALEXANDRIA, VA – The Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE) today released a paper entitled “What is ‘Career Ready’?” that outlines three broad sets of skills students need to be career-ready: core academic skills, employability skills, and technical skills. ACTE created the paper to broaden the national discussion around the term career readiness.

Recently, the Obama Administration and groups such as the National Governors Association (NGA), Council of Chief State School Officers (CSSO) and other national and state policymakers have discussed the importance of high schools preparing students to be “college- and career-ready.” However, most of the discussion has centered on college readiness, with little focus on actual career readiness.

Career readiness includes: core academic skills and the ability to apply those skills to concrete situations in order to function in the workplace and in routine daily activities; em­ployability skills that are essential in any career area such as critical thinking and responsibility; and technical, job-specific skills related to a specific career pathway.

“ACTE believes it is important to expand the conversation to include career readiness and increase the recognition of the broad range of skills students need to succeed in the global economy,” said ACTE Executive Director Jan Bray. “Career readiness, like college readiness, should be the responsibility of the entire school and education community.”

From a business perspective, the career-ready definition is critical to developing a qualified workforce. Allyson Knox, academic program manager for National Partnerships, U.S. Partners in Learning, at Microsoft Corporation commented, “Ensuring that all students possess strong academic, employability, and technical skills is critical as we face the growing demands of the global economy.”

“Today's release regarding career readiness reinforces the collective importance of academic skills, employability skills and technical skills for career success,” said Iowa ACTE Executive Director Dave Bunting, a former postsecondary administrator. “It bridges the perspectives of both employers and postsecondary institutions regarding a student's preparation for their future, and it will guide all educators in preparing students to compete in the 21st century economy."

To obtain a copy of the paper, please visit ACTE’s website at

About ACTE
The Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE) is the nation’s largest not-for-profit education association dedicated to the advancement of education that prepares youth and adults for successful careers. It provides advocacy, public awareness and access to information, professional development and tools that enable members to be successful and effective leaders. Founded in 1926, ACTE has more than 27,000 members including teachers, counselors and administrators at the middle school, high school and postsecondary levels.

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