In middle and high school, the Career and Technical Education (CTE) program is overseen by the state CTE office in the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI). At the post-secondary level, 34 two-year colleges overseen by the State Board for Community and Technical Colleges offer classes that continue career skills building within the same 16 career clusters that organize the middle and high school CTE classes.
The Workforce Training and Education Coordinating Board (WTB) provides planning, coordination, evaluation, monitoring and policy analysis for the state training system as a whole, and gives advice about the system to the governor and Legislature.
Together we design skills-oriented, workforce-driven educational options for Washington's high school and college students.
CTE has other important partners as well.
Major CTE Partners
The Washington Apprenticeship and Training Council and the Department of Labor and Industries promote a highly skilled and diverse workforce by developing and supporting apprenticeship training programs throughout the state.
The council collaborates with CTE by providing apprenticeship education oversight and safety guidelines for students in the workplace.
Among its many duties, the council:
- Ensures that all who are interested in apprenticeship have access to information about various programs and have equal opportunity to participate.
- Assesses the potential for apprenticeship opportunities in green and emerging occupations and technologies.
The Higher Education Coordinating Board is a 10-member citizen board appointed by the governor and confirmed by the Senate. Members administer the state's student financial aid programs and provide strategic planning, coordination, monitoring and policy analysis for higher education in Washington.
The board collaborates with Career and Technical Education by providing dual/college credit opportunities to high school students, thereby helping to smooth their transition to four-year colleges and universities.
Major functions of the board include to:
- Develop a strategic master plan for higher education and implement the plan's goals and priorities.
- Serve as an advocate for students and for the overall higher education system.
- Create a seamless system of public education.
- Administer student financial assistance programs.
- Help families save for college.
The State Board for Community and Technical Colleges has nine members appointed by the governor with the consent of the state Senate. The board provides "general supervision and control over the state system of community and technical colleges."
The board collaborates with CTE and Washington Tech Prep to help students make a seamless transition between high school and the two-year college system.
Among its specific responsibilities, the board:
- Ensures that each college maintains an open door policy and offers the educational, training and service programs specified by law.
- Establishes minimum standards for the operation of community and technical colleges with respect to a number of areas including curriculum content, degree requirements, admission policies, and eligibility of courses for state support.
The State Board of Education (SBE) was founded in 1877 and its leadership role as a catalyst for change in the state's K-12 educational system was expanded in 2005.
The board is composed of students and education, community and business leaders from across Washington. Its 16 members include the state superintendent, individuals elected by local school boards, individuals appointed by the governor, a private school representative, and two non-voting high school student council members.
The SBE has three overarching goals:
- To improve achievement for all students
- To improve graduation rates
- To improve student preparation for post-secondary education and the 21st century world of work and citizenship
The state Workforce Training and Education Coordinating Board is a partnership of labor, business and government entities and is dedicated to helping Washington residents obtain and succeed in family-wage jobs, while also meeting employers' needs for skilled workers.
The board oversees a workforce development system that includes 18 education and training programs receiving nearly $1 billion annually in state and federal funds. The 12-member board is appointed by the governor.
"Workforce" programs cover a broad territory beginning with high school and reaching through apprenticeships, certificate programs and two-year colleges. With 40 percent of all jobs requiring more than a high school diploma but not requiring a four-year college degree, these programs have the potential to change lives and lift the state economy at the same time.
The board collaborates with CTE by:
- Looking at career trends and identifying those that are likely to grow.
- Helping to develop and implement CTE programs in middle and high schools.
- Helping to coordinate the transition of high school students to apprenticeships and college.
- Reviewing the successes of CTE programs and the reporting the results to state and federal governments.
The Career Clusters icons are being used with permission of the: States' Career Clusters Initiative, 2009.