Vision of Colorado Career and Technical Education

Colorado CTE delivers proven pathways to lifelong career success!

Mission of Colorado Career and Technical Education

CTE ensures a thriving Colorado economy by providing relevant and rigorous education that is connected, responsive and real.

Overall Goal / Outcome of CTE

To provide quality educational programs emphasizing core academic content, Postsecondary & Workforce Readiness (PWR) competencies, technical skills, and seamless transition to further education or employment and better prepare students, including special populations to meet challenges of the workforce, economic development, and emerging occupations.
CTE Fact Sheet (pdf)

Fact Sheet 2016

MIDDLE SCHOOL

20,721 total CTE enrollments (19,606 individual CTE students) in 2014-2015.

  • 86 middle school CTE programs approved within 74 public schools reported enrollment for 14-15.
  • Middle school program areas include: Agriculture Education; Audio/Video Technology & Communications; Business & Marketing; Combined Exploratory; Family & Consumer Sciences; Information Technology; Skilled Trades & Technical Sciences; STEM; and Visual & Design Arts.

SECONDARY

125,182 total CTE enrollments (96,854 individual CTE students) in 2014-2015.

  • 1,306 secondary CTE programs in 147 public school districts, 8 technical centers, 1 special school, 3 community colleges, 3 area technical colleges, 1 four-year local college, and correctional facilities.
  • 32% of CTE students identified as economically disadvantaged; 9% as disabled; 38% as minority.
  • 38% of 9th-12th grade students in Colorado enrolled in at least one CTE course.
  • 63,034 total CTE program completions (55,179 total individual CTE students).
  • 75% percent of CTE concentrators and completers who graduated with a high school diploma met the proficient or advanced levels on the statewide 10th grade high school Reading/Language Arts TCAP assessment. Of this same population of CTE concentrators and completers, 36% met the proficient or advanced levels on the statewide 10th grade high school Mathematics TCAP assessment.
  • 84% of previous year CTE completers who responded to school surveys and who were seeking employment had obtained jobs within a year following program completion.

POSTSECONDARY

34,829 total CTE enrollments (32,878 individual CTE students) in 2014-2015.

  • 566 postsecondary CTE programs in 13 system community colleges, 2 district community colleges, 1 four-year local college, 3 area technical colleges, and correctional facilities.
  • 18,697 total CTE program completions (17,349 total individual CTE students).
  • 13,646 completions at system, district, and local colleges.
  • 3,082 completions at area technical colleges.
  • 94% of previous year CTE completers who schools were able to contact and who were seeking employment had obtained jobs within a year following program completion.
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COLORADO CTE CALENDAR

    Colorado Career Clusters

  • Agriculture, Food & Natural Resources
  • Energy
  • Management & Administration
  • Marketing
  • Finance
  • Government & Public Administration
  • Hospitality & Tourism
  • Human Services
  • Education & Training
  • Health Sciences
  • Law, Public Safety, Corrections & Security
  • Transportation, Distribution & Logistics
  • Architecture & Construction
  • Manufacturing
  • STEM
  • Arts, A/V Technology & Communication
  • Information Technology
  • Postsecondary & Workforce Readiness

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CTE Program Types

Colorado CTE programs are divided into six industry sectors: Agriculture, Natural Resources & Energy; STEM, Arts, Design & Information Technology; Skilled Trades & Technical Sciences; Health Science, Criminal Justice & Public Safety; Hospitality, Human Services & Education; Business, Marketing & Public Administration.

More than 5,000 community and business leaders serve on advisory committees and councils supporting CTE programs.

Career and Technical Student Organizations

CTSOs help students build leadership skills, promote positive work values, and reinforce the CTE curriculum.

Nine CTE student organizations include: DECA, FBLA, FCCLA, FFA, HOSA, PBL, (SC)2, SkillsUSA, and TSA.

In 2014-2015, nearly 30,000 students participated in CTE student organizations as state affiliated members.

CTE State Funding

Over the last 40 years, appropriations for the Career Technical Act (formerly the Colorado Vocational Act of 1970) have dropped proportionately to the dramatic increase of the actual cost of CTE programs. In 1971-72, the General Assembly provided just over 58 percent of the actual cost of CTE programs (Actual cost: $11.16 million, state funding: $6.5 million). In 2014-15, the General Assembly provided 25 percent of the actual cost of CTE programs. (Actual cost from FY15 reported expenses: $97million, state funding: $25million).

Strategies for the Future

  • Implementing Career and Technical Education Plans of Study
  • Strengthening Accountability for Results
  • Adopting a Project-Based Focus
  • Assessing Career and Technical Skills
  • Integrating Academic and CTE Skills and Knowledge
  • Building a Corps of Effective CTE Teachers
  • Ensuring Effective Strategies For Special Populations
  • Connecting CTE To Employers and Workforce Priorities

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student with calipers