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CTAE 101

Each year nearly 703,000 Georgia middle school and high school students participate in Career, Technical, and Agricultural Education (CTAE) courses offered by their local school district. These courses expose students to career pathways, teach them employability skills, and prepare them to enter the workforce, a university, a technical college, military service, or a registered apprenticeship. CTAE prepares students for careers that are high-skill, high-wage, and high-demand. Georgia offers 17 career clusters, each with multiple career pathways to choose from.

Georgia‚Äôs CTAE program values include being career-focused, building employer partnerships, encouraging innovation, and providing a student-centered approach to drive decision-making and investments. In 2022-2023, 450 industry-certified programs were offered through CTAE in Georgia. CTAE delivers for students, as demonstrated by the 13-percentage-point increase in the high school graduation rate for CTAE concentrators versus all high school students in 2022-2023 (97.75% for CTAE concentrators versus the 84% state average). CTAE continues to deliver students ready for the workforce with 27,000+ students participating in work-based learning and youth apprenticeship opportunities. 

Here are some key definitions for CTAE:

Career and Technical Student Organizations (CTSOs): co-curricular organizations with leadership programs and competitive events that reflect current curriculum standards and competencies for the instructional programs they serve

Concentrator: a secondary student who successfully completes any 2 courses within a Georgia approved CTAE pathway

Pathway Completer: a student who earned 1 unit of credit per course for the following: an introductory course plus two sequential courses within a state-recognized Georgia CTAE pathway

Cluster: CTAE courses are delivered through distinct, specialized areas of expertise in high-demand occupations known as the 17 career clusters

End of Pathway Assessment (EOPA): a measurement mechanism that ascertains the technical skill attainment level of students participating in CTAE courses

Program of study: a coordinated, non-duplicative sequence of academic and technical content at the secondary and postsecondary level that incorporates challenging state academic standards; addresses both academic and technical knowledge and skills, including employability skills; is aligned with the needs of industries in the economy of the state, region, tribal community, or local area; and culminates in the attainment of a recognized postsecondary credential

Coordinated Career Academic Education/Project Success (CCAE/PS): works with students who are at risk of dropping out of high school based on the Carl Perkins Federal Regulations; targeted students receive assistance from a designated teacher as they continue their high school career

Career and Technical Instruction (CTI): a specialized intervention service designed to support high school students with disabilities enrolled in CTAE classes. The primary goals of the program are to provide appropriate learning supports in the CTAE environment, instruction, and opportunities that result in the attainment of entry-level job skills, self-determination skills, and transition skills 

Work-Based Learning: program that allows students to work at local employers (e.g., internships, paid positions) to gain employability skills and industry exposure

Youth Apprenticeship: a structured combination of school-based and work-based learning that integrates academic training and paid work

YouScience: an assessment that identifies aptitudes, interests, and 21st century careers to make the highest quality career and educational recommendations using 5 to 8 minute performance-based exercises