Ohio Association for Career and Technical Education (Ohio ACTE) represents 5,000 career technical and adult educators, including teachers/instructors, administrators, directors, superintendents, and school board members. On their behalf, Ohio ACTE leaders, as well as leaders from the Ohio Association of Career Technical Superintendents (OACTS) and Ohio Association of Comprehensive and Compact Career-Technical Schools (CCS), work together to develop policy and funding recommendations to share with Ohio legislators and other policymakers with the goal of improving the ability of educators to deliver high quality career-technical and adult education to students as well as meet Ohio’s workforce needs.
“Representing career-technical and adult education in education policy discussions is key to providing quality career-tech programs, opportunities, and helping students meet their career goals,” said Christine Gardner, Ohio ACTE Executive Director. “At the same time, meeting Ohio’s diverse business and industry workforce needs through successful work and college ready students is important to grow Ohio’s economy,” she added.
Collective advocacy for career-technical and adult education includes grassroots efforts, such as schools inviting legislators and other officials to their campuses to see CTE classes in action, attend events, tour the school, meet with school leaders and many other activities with the goal of showing the impact of CTE on students, communities, and the workforce. Many CTE school leaders also have relationships with legislators and can communicate ideas, concerns and answer questions.
Other advocacy efforts occur in Columbus, where conversations and discussions take place with state legislators and other state leaders. To effectively advocate, career technical and adult education leaders work with Dee Smith, Pappas & Associates (representing CCS) and Will Vorys, Dickinson Wright PLLC. Smith is a career-tech graduate with extensive experience working with Ohio’s General Assembly and Vorys is an attorney with a focus on government affairs and policy.
Both Smith and Vorys work with association leaders to formulate recommendations, suggest approaches to communicate those recommendations, and advocate positions with legislators and others.
Association leaders meet, discuss and otherwise collaborate to solidify policy recommendations that will have a positive impact on career-technical and adult education.
CTE Legislative Policy Development Participants:
- Brian Bontempo, Auburn Career Center, Board Member, OhioACTE
- Christine Boucher, Eastland Fairfield Career Center, Board Member, OhioACTE
- Tim Buschur, Tri Star Career Compact, Ohio CCS Treasurer*
- Bill Bussey, Executive Director, OTCs
- Bill DiMascio, West Shore Career-Technical, Ohio ACTE Board Member*
- Greg Edinger, Vanguard-Sentinel Career and Technology Centers, OACTS*
- Christine Gardner, Executive Director, OhioACTE*
- Krista Gearheart, South Stark Career Academy, Ohio CCS Legislative Chair*
- Jon Graft, Butler Tech, Ohio ACTE President*
- Maggie Hess, Executive Director, OACTS*
- Liz Jensen, Kettering-Fairmont Career Technical Center, CCS President*
- Kevin Kratzer, Southern Hills CC, OACTS*
- Joyce Malainy, C-TEC of Licking County, OACTS*
- Ryan McCoart. Upper Valley Career Center, Board Member, OhioACTE
- Mike Parry, Grant Career Center, Board Member, Ohio ACTE*
- Dee Smith, Pappas and Associates, Executive Director, CCS*
- Will Vorys, Dickinson Wright, LLC, Legislative Counsel, Ohio ACTE, OACTS*
*Member of the Ohio CTE Future Committee – this new committee includes leadership representatives from the three CTE associations, who convene to discuss short-term and long-term goals and policy for career-technical education.