Porcelli: The Other Side of Education (1/19)


Activating students’ futures

By Mike Porcelli

After decades of advocating for expanding student career opportunities, and training programs matched to their abilities and interests – both academic and vocational – I am pleased to see schools moving in that direction.

Last week, I received an invitation to an online DOE professional conference titled: “Activate Students’ Futures.”

That was the theme of my message last week, “Student success is the mission;” activating students’ futures is about preparing them for that success.

With that in mind, the mission of the Department of Education and Chancellor David Banks is to “ensure that all students graduate from high school with a strong plan, real skills and a head start towards a life aligned to their passion and purpose with a pathway to economic security.” Their vision is “for all students to be prepared with a rigorous academic foundation, real world work experience, important professional skills, a strong college and career plan and early college credits or industry credentials.”

We could not ask for any higher objectives from our schools. That’s exactly what I have been preaching for decades. Finally, the Department of Education is singing our song.

Hopefully, this end-of-the-month conference will counteract decades of misinformation about trade education and enlighten school leaders on the advantages of CTE programs for many students. Many more students then have had access to such career training, leading to every student obtaining maximum benefit from their education.

Schools providing such educational opportunities is only half of what’s necessary for student success. Students and parents must also seek out and enroll in those programs that will maximize their chances for success.

To achieve their goal of providing the right kind of training for students, the DOE has committed to building an ecosystem that supports career pathways for them. Toward that end, one year ago, Jade Grieve was appointed “Chief of Student Pathways.” Her mandate is to build an ecosystem that ensures all students have access to career pathways in high school, leading them to graduate with a “strong plan and a headstart on a pathway to the middle class.”

The Student Futures Conference is part of that effort to put every high school graduate on the road to success. This should be the goal of every education system – always.

I hope every member of the DOE attends this conference. I would even suggest attendance be mandatory, or at least, viewing a recording should be required.

For their part, to prepare for high school program selection, students and parents should view these DOE links: https://www.schools.nyc.gov/school-life/activate-your-futurehttps://cte.nyc/web/welcomehttps://cte.nyc/web/ 

For maximum future success for our city, let’s insist that all school personnel attend the conference, and encourage all students and their parents to visit the links above as soon as possible.

Here’s to the best academic and CTE programs for every student, leading to successful futures for all.

Academic & Trade Education are Two Sides of a Coin. This column explores the impact of CTE programs on students, society, and the economy.

Mike Porcelli: life-long mechanic, adjunct professor, and host of Autolab Radio, is committed to restoring trade education in schools before it’s too late. https://www.linkedin.com/in/mike-porcelli-master-mechanic-allasecerts/ 

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