Student Organizations Meet in Washington, D.C.
On February 24, the National Coordinating Council of the Career and Technical Student Organizations met at the Office of Vocational and Adult Education (OVAE) at the U.S. Department of Education. There was a great deal to discuss. OVAE staff has requested key dates for conferences and events from all the CTSOs. They plan to get staff out to the major events like conference and WLTI. FFA national officers have met with Secretary of Education Arnie Duncan, and OVAE would like to see more students coming to the Department of Education to engage staff and offer their opinions and CTE success stories.
OVAE is also developing a CTE marketing strategy, and they want student input. They plan to invite SkillsUSA and the other CTSO student leaders to serve on a focus group for the initiative.
We had a good discussion on alumni initiatives by the various organizations. Going forward, we will be holding NCC-CTSO “themed meetings.” Alumni will be the focus of the first one. A second theme is communications strategies. It’s great to see the cooperation among the CTSO executives and the plans to share best practices.
We had a visit by Assistant Secretary Brenda Dann-Messier. She discussed the importance of CTSOs in CTE and the fact that our students are the face of career and technical education. She said she has plans to begin reauthorization of Perkins immediately, even though it’s authorized through 2012 already. And, she also believes that, for the first time, we have the opportunity to have CTE named specifically in the Elementary and Secondary Education Act.