By Becky Brewster
The CCAISD P-Tech (Pathways in Technology) Steering Committee held its kick-off meeting at the Hotel El Capitan Meeting Room last Sunday. CCAISD has received a $50,000 P-Tech grant to plan clear pathways for students to access regional employment opportunities in response to local workforce needs by providing students the opportunity to simultaneously earn industry certifications, level 1 and 2 certificates, and/or an associate degree. CCAISD is only one of 10 schools in the state of Texas to be awarded this P-Tech planning grant. This opportunity will help Van Horn lead other rural schools in providing a rigorous education and career pathways to our students.
The Committee is comprised of:
•Karolyne Carloss, P-Tech Program Director
•Sondra McCoy, Director of Academic Programs
•Susan Forthman, Grant Writer
•Ken Baugh, CCAISD Superintendent
•Industry participants from Odessa College, Blue Origin, Workforce Solutions Borderplex, Natural Minerals, HB Construction and Navigator Oil & Minerals, Inc.
•Other participants affiliated with education or with local businesses.
Superintendent Ken Baugh opened the meeting with a review of the Van Horn Vision which is an “educational program that will enable all students to graduate with an associate’s degree and STEM, (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math), driven industry certifications that will equip them for success in an increasingly technological world.”
To complement the Van Horn Vision, CCAISD’s P-Tech proposal is to create the Van Horn Science and Engineering Collegiate High School – initially offering industry certifications and level 1 and 2 certificates (Electro-Mechanical Technician), an Associate of Science Degree, and the opportunity to transfer to Bachelor of Science (Mechanical or Aerospace Engineering) programs.
This plan, once completed, will be submitted to the Texas Education Agency (TEA), and the District will be placed in competition for funds to implement the plan. The P-Tech program dovetails with the Gear-Up Grant, Project Lead the Way, and AVID that have already been introduced to the campus.
The goal of the P-Tech program is to enable students to:
Earn an Associate’s Degree tuition free while in high school, eliminating thousands of dollars in college tuition costs
Start college with two-years of college credit
Enter the job market with work-ready skills upon completion of high school
Prepare students to handle a collegiate workload
Implementation of the P-Tech Program will enable CCAISD to:
Create an environment of high expectations and hands-on learning in real-world simulation labs and work based-learning experience
Expose students to infinite possibilities and inspire and challenge them to reach their individual potential
Implementation of the P-Tech Program will also enable the businesses and community members to:
Cultivate employable skills
Partner in decisions about current industry practices and needs
Provide valuable internship and mentorship opportunities for students
The Steering Committee will meet quarterly, and the Design Leadership Team will meet monthly to meet the plan submission date of January 15, 2020. Three committees have been formed: Industry Programs and Partnerships, Curriculum Development and Integration, and Recruitment and Evaluation.
For questions about the CCAISD P-Tech program, or to get involved, contact Karolyne Carloss at [email protected] For more information on the Texas P-Tech program, check out the TEA’s website at https://tea.texas.gov/PTECH/.