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Career and Technical Education

CTE Terms and Acronyms

Academy - A school within a school. There are several Career Academies in our high schools.

ACT - The ACT test is a national college admission examination comprising tests in English, mathematics, reading and science reasoning. The ACT is an alternative to the SAT I.

ACTE - Association for Career and Technical Education is the largest national education association dedicated to the advancement of education that prepares youth and adults for careers.

Apprenticeship - A work-based learning experience that lasts from two to four years and prepares a student for a journeyman certificate. Apprenticeship programs are controlled by the NC Department of Labor.

Articulation Agreement - Allows students to receive advanced placement credit for completion of identified Career and Technical Education courses while in high school.

Assessment - A tool used to measure abilities, aptitudes, values and interests.

ASVAB, Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery - An aptitude and interest inventory given to all 11th- and 12th-graders. The US military provides and scores this assessment at no charge.

BEH, Behaviorally/Emotionally Handicapped - Students who exhibit patterns of situationally inappropriate intrapersonal or interpersonal behavior of such frequency, duration and intensity that the student¹s own learning process is disrupted.

Business Alliance - Engages more 500 business volunteers in helping schools realize their improvement goals in student performance, communication and professional development.

Business Alliance Leadership Team - Oversees the work of school-based business alliances.

Business Partnerships -  Provide relevant, realistic experiences that help students see the connection between academic success today and career success tomorrow.

CAWB, Capital Area Workforce Development Board - The local policy board responsible for planning, oversight and coordination of workforce initiatives in Johnston and Wake Counties.

Career Academy - A personalized experience for a group of students in a high school. All studies focus on a particular career area.

Career Academy Advisory Board - A group of business persons and school personnel who give advice to a specific career academy.

Career and Technical Education (CTE) - Comprises courses in Agricultural Education, Business and Information Technology Education, Career Development Education, Family and Consumer Sciences Education, Health Occupations Education, Marketing Education, Technology Education and Trade and Industrial Education.

Career Cluster - The US Department of Education groups all occupations into 16 clusters.

Career Day - Brings career models into the classroom to expose students to careers they may not be familiar with, and to help students think about their interests and abilities in relation to careers.

Career Development - The process through which an individual comes to understand his or her career aspirations. Students develop and identify their careers through a continuum of career awareness, career exploration and work exposure activities that help them to discern their own career path. Career Development encompasses an individual's education and career-related choices and the outcome of those choices.

Career Explorer - see Choices Explorer

Career Fair - Career models set up a display about their career or company in the school lobby, gymnasium, parking lot or other location. These career models expose the students to careers they may not be familiar with, and help the students think about their interests and abilities in relation to careers.

Career Key - An interest assessment that can be taken on paper or over the Internet.

Career Pathway - North Carolina Department of Public Instruction groups all occupations into 11 categories called career pathways. Most high school elective courses are assigned to a specific career pathway. Depending on the course of study, many students have to take four electives in one pathway.

Careership - (obsolete term) see Work-Based Learning.

CBVT, Community Based Vocational Training - A program for students with special needs to learn vocational skills while employed in the community. Like a Short-Term Work Experience (STWE).

CFNC - College Foundation of North Carolina - State agency that provides low-interest loans to pay for college education.

  • www.cfnc.org - An Internet college exploration tool that includes college search, electronic application process, scholarship information.

Choices Explorer - An Internet career exploration tool from Bridges Transitions that includes: a career planning guide, a career research tool and decision making tools. Formerly called Career Explorer and CX Online.

CDC, Career Development Coordinator - School-to-career contact at each middle and high school.

College Fair, Higher Education Fair - Event where several colleges, and other postsecondary institutions, send representatives to one location so students can gather information from many schools.

College Planning Workshop - A workshop to help students and parents understand the college application process.

Concurrent Enrollment (Dual Enrollment) - the enrollment of a high school student, 16 years or older, in a community college curriculum or continuing education course, except adult high school. Students earn community college credit, and WCPSS credit. The tuition is free. (compare with Cooperative Program Agreement)

Cooperative Learning (Cooperative Education) - a work-based learning experience that promotes the development of workplace skills and career planning strategies. The work-based experience is linked directly to a specific class. Credit is earned for both. The fifth digit of the WCPSS course number is 6.

Cooperative Program Agreement - community college courses that are offered to high school students either at the community college or at the high school. Students earn both WCPSS and community college credit. The tuition is free. The course list is agreed upon by WCPSS and a specific community college each year. This is often referred to as Huskins Bill courses.

CATS, Career Pathway Employer Team - 15 community-based teams focused each of the career pathways. Provide students with opportunities for < and exploration>work-based-learning experiences, and learning the value of school and academics as preparation for a career.

CTE - see Career and Technical Education.

Decision Making - A process involving steps that help make a decision.

  1. Identify the decision to be made (What are my career goals?)
  2. Gather information (My interests, abilities, values. My career options, salaries, work settings, education required)
  3. Identify alternatives (Which career options suits me best?)
  4. Weigh the evidence (Consider pros and cons, long- and short-term outcomes, and examine resources available)
  5. Choose among the alternatives (Generate a short list of careers)
  6. Review and evaluate the decision (Did I consider all the important factors? Are there new alternatives?)

DPI, NCDPI, North Carolina Department of Public Instruction - Implements the policy and direction of the State Board of Education. This state agency develops the N.C. Standard Course of Study for K-12 schools and provides testing, reporting, financial and other services to local school districts. DPI also monitors compliance with a variety of laws and policies.

Dual Enrollment - see Concurrent Enrollment.

Elective Courses - High school courses that are not required for all students. Career-oriented elective courses include Career and Technical Education, Arts Education and JROTC courses.

Employability Skills - Skills such as punctuality, responsibility, dependability, honesty, teamwork and integrity, which can all be translated into the work environment.

Explorer Posts - Career clubs operated by the Boy Scouts of America. Local Explorer Posts include TV production, engineering, law enforcement and event design and production. For more information, contact the local Occoneechee Council.

Financial Aid Workshop - Helps students and parents understand the available options to pay for postsecondary education.

Five-Year Plan - Plan developed by high school seniors mapping out the next five years of education and employment. The senior year is year one of the five-year plan.

Great Xplorations Career Fair - County-wide career fair where more than 100 businesses and organizations set up display tables and talk to over 2,500 of our students about careers in their business or organization.

Huskins Bill - an amendment to North Carolina General Statute 115D-20(4) enacted in 1983 which provides a vehicle for the articulation of educational programs between local high schools and community colleges. This is also called Cooperative Program Agreement.

IEP, Individual education plan - Addresses all of the special education needs of a student.

Internship - Work-based learning experience that promotes the development of workplace skills and career planning strategies. The work-based experience links classroom learning and the skills needed in the workplace. This experience lasts at least 180 hours and may be paid or unpaid. See also Short-Term Work Experience (STWE).

Job Shadowing - Student with a particular career interest spends two to four hours with someone who holds a position in that career.

LD, Learning Disabled - Students who often experience problems with the acquisition, organization and/or retrieval of information

LEA, Local education agency - A local school district. The Wake County Public School System is an LEA.

Mentally Handicapped - Students who are mentally handicapped have lower general cognitive functioning and a reduced rate of learning. Subcategories within this area include Educable Mentally Handicapped (EMH), Trainable Mentally Handicapped (TMH), and Severely/Profoundly Mentally Handicapped (SMH).

Military Information - Information about all branches of the armed services provided by representatives when they visit the high schools.

NAF, National Academy Foundation - a national organization that assists and coordinates career academies. Two WCPSS career academies are NAF academies.

NCACTE - North Carolina Association for Career and Technical Education is the North Carolina state association affiliated with ACTE and is dedicated to the advancement of education that prepares youth and adults for careers.

NC SOICC, North Carolina State Occupational Information Coordinating Committee - Career resources for North Carolina.

OCS, Occupational Course of Study - Students in an Occupational Course of Study learn skills in high school to gain immediate employment upon graduation. 

PSAT/NMSQT - is a standardized test that measures skills in verbal reasoning, math problem solving and writing. All WCPSS juniors take the PSAT at no charge. The PSAT prepares students to take the SAT test.

Resource Speakers - Community members invited to speak on a specific subject related to classroom instruction.

SAT I - is a three-hour, primarily multiple choice test that measures verbal and mathematical reasoning abilities that develop over time. Many colleges require an SAT I test score for admission.

SAT II Subject Tests - are one-hour, primarily multiple choice tests that measure the student knowledge of particular subjects and ability to apply that knowledge. Some colleges require these tests for placement.

School-to-Career (STC) - Provides career exploration and planning opportunities for all students.

SDS, Self-Directed Search - Assessment that helps students discover the occupations that best suit their interests and skills.

Senior Conference - Each senior meets with his/her counselor to discuss senior year and postsecondary plans.

SES, Special Education Services - Responsible for providing information and assistance to educators school personnel responsible for ensuring that all procedures that apply to students with disabilities are implemented according to federal law.

Service Learning - Combines community service with a structured school-based time for reflection about that service, emphasizing the connections between service experiences and academic learning. Some high schools require a certain number of hours of service learning.

Shadowing - see Job Shadowing

Short-Term Work Experience (STWE) - paid or unpaid work that connects to classroom work. This is like a short internship.

SOICC - see NC SOICC

Special Populations Coordinator (formerly Support Services Teacher) - A high school staff member who assists the CTE teachers with adapting the instruction and testing of their special needs students.

State Board of Education - Appointed by the Governor, is charged with supervising and administering "the free public school system and education funds provided for its support." There are 13 board members who meet on a monthly basis.

State Superintendent of Public Instruction - Elected by popular vote of North Carolina citizens. He or she serves as chief administrative officer of the State Board of Education.

STC, School-to-Career - an initiative to provide career exploration and planning opportunities for all students.

STCC, School-to-Career Council - An all-volunteer council that provides ideas and expertise to our school system and organizes School to Career in Wake County

Tech Prep - Technical preparation for high school students that paves the way for attendance of a community college or technical school, and which leads to an associate degree or certificate and high skill, high wage employment.

VoCATS - Statewide system for planning, implementing and evaluating instruction in CTE courses.

Wake County Public School System Board of Education - Sets policies ranging from local graduation standards to discipline to the school calendar. 

WBL, Work-based learning - An experience where the learning takes place in a work situation, away from the school. This includes job shadowing, cooperative education, internships and apprenticeships.

WCPSS, Wake County Public School System - Sixteenth largest in the nation. The best school system anywhere. 

Worker's Permit - Most youth under the age of 18 years need a worker's permit in order to be employed.

Xtreme Beginnings - Countywide career exploration event held each spring for hundreds of 10th through 12th graders.

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