Last week the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) released a special OVAE- and NCES-funded report on the state of postsecondary career and technical education (CTE) in the United States at an event hosted by the New America Foundation. This review is part of the OECD’s Skills beyond School project, which looks at the preparation of younger people and adults for technical and professional jobs through postsecondary education and training in more than 20 countries. Research for the U.S. country report was conducted from May 2012 through March 2013 and included two visits to the United States and three state case studies (Florida, Washington and Maryland).
The release event, which was held at the New America Foundation’s Washington offices, engaged subject matter experts, practitioners, and state and federal policymakers in discussions around linking postsecondary CTE funding to outcomes; promoting high-quality credentialing standards; and smoothing transitions into, within, and out of postsecondary education and training into the labor market. OVAE Assistant Secretary Brenda Dann-Messier and Deputy Assistant Secretary Johan Uvin both spoke at the event, reflecting on the tremendous need to ensure high-quality postsecondary CTE options in the United States are meeting the needs of students and employers.
The release event had a high turnout, with more than 150 people attending in person. Reflecting on the event, Assistant Secretary Dann-Messier noted, “The collection of engaged stakeholders in the room and the thoughtful, informed conversations were incredible. There is clearly a great deal of recognition out there in the field of the need for greater quality, transparency and coherence in postsecondary CTE, and this report by the OECD provides us all with a tremendous opportunity to move this discussion forward and begin crafting collective solutions to the many challenges we currently face.”