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2. New Jersey Governor's Task Force, Jobs for Veterans.
3. New Jersey Department of Labor and Industry.
4. New Jersey Department of Education, Division of Vocational Education. 5. New Jersey Department of Higher Education, Office of Community Colleges.
6. New Jersey Advisory Council on Vocational Education.
7. Veterans Administration.
8. National Advisory Council on Vocational Education.
Florida: The Florida State Advisory Council on Vocational Education has authorized payment for production of a 60 second television film and a 30 second television film, to be introduced and narrated by Governor Rubin nskew. The project will be run through the Florida Department of Education, Division of Vocational Education.
7TH REPORT, "VOCATIONAL STUDENT ORGANIZATIONS," NATIONAL ADVISORY COUNCIL ON VOCATIONAL EDUCATION, NOVEMBER 15, 1972
The National Advisory Council on Vocational Education was created by the Congress through the Vocational Education Amendments of 1968. It is composed of 21 persons, appointed by the Presi dent from diverse backgrounds in labor, management and education. It is charged by law to advise the Commissioner of Education concerning the operation of vocational education programs, make recommendations concerning such programs, and make annual reports to the Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare for transmittal to Congress.
NATIONAL ADVISORY COUNCIL ON VOCATIONAL EDUCATION,
Hon. E1110T RICHARDSON,
Washington, D.C., November 15, 1972.
Secretary, Department of Health, Education, and Welfare,
DEAR MR. SECRETARY: The National Advisory Council on Vocational Education is pleased to submit as its Seventh Report recommendations for expanding the visibility and support of Vocational Student Organizations.
For many years, Vocational Student Organizations have typified the cooperation between education and the private sector which is being so urgently sought today. These student organizations have supplied their members with the incentives and guidance which we recognize now as essential to bringing relevance to education, and which we accept as an integral part of the emerging career education concept.
We believe that Vocational Student Organizations are a neglected resource which can make great contributions toward expanding the options available to our Nation's student body.
This report attempts to bring their story to the public, and solicit nationwide support for their efforts.
The Council is deeply appreciative of the cooperation of all the student organizations, along with their advocates both in and out of the education field, in assisting us with gathering the background for this report. We are indebte d to Council Member Martha Bachman, who is also Chairman of the Delaware State Advisory Council on Vocational Education, for her excellent guidance in preparing the report. Sincerely,
LAWRENCE DAVENPORT, Chauman,
VOCATIONAL STUDENT ORGANIZATIONS
There is across the land a crisis of confidence in our education system. The reason is clear: There is an increasing disparity between what society needs and what our educational institutions are producing. The public is deeply concerned, and their concern is rooted in reality.
Industry, still by far the principal source of opportunities, is changing very, very rapidly. Education is not. There is a torrent of talk about change. The press is full of announcements of exciting innovations in teaching technology.
There thus is created the illusion of change in a sector of society that is painfully slow to adopt change.
Industry accepts change as a matter of absolute necessity. The inexorable competitive pressure of a free economy forces continuous innovation and its prompt, universal imitation.
American education is, on the other hand, uniquely insulated from change. Most of our institutions are deliberately exempt from any market discipline. There are some good logical and historical reasons for this, but they do not alter the consequences. American industry is absorbing change at an accelerating rate. Its manpower needs are changing in accommodation. But, these changing needs are not being met by institutions that are changing much more slowly. Thus there is a growing gap between what industry needs and what education is producing.
Industry is beginning to recognize this. They know that the limiting factor on economic growth in the seventies and egihties will not be technology. Their laboratories are pouring out innovations faster than they can be digested. Nor will a lack of capital limit economic growth. The limiting factor will be inaccurately and inadequately educated manpower.
Miseducated people are a problem to themselves and to industry, and a threat to the economic prosperity on which so many of our hopes as a nation depend.
It is much easier to identify the relevance gap than it is to prescribe a comprehensive solution. But one part of the solution is perfectly clear: There must be direct, daily involvement of industry in practically all phases of the educational enterprise.
One splendid, yet neglected, mechanism for industry involvement is already in place our national vocational student organizations. They have existed among us for 45 years. They reach 1.5 million more young people every yearyear after year. Industry invests an estimated three million dollars a year to help pay their modest costs, but these contributions are even more important as a measure of the esteem American industry holds for this vital organization. But much more important, thousands of business, industry, labor and community representatives participate in the daily activities of these organizations. The value of the time they contribute is inestimable, but infinitely more valuable are the solid links between industry and our young people that are being built. These vocational youth organizations, whose membership is voluntary, are quietly doing more to close the relevance gap than any other movement on the educational scene.
Their out-reach is spreading across the whole spectrum of vocational concern. DECA: Distributive Education Clubs of America for students taking marketing, merchandising and management courses in the secondary and postsecondary schools.
FBLA-PBL: Future Business Leaders of America-Phi Beta Lambda is a national organization serving students preparing for careers in business. FFA Future Farmers of America for students preparing for careers in ag poduction, processing, supply and service, ag mechanics, natural resources and environmental science, horticulture and forestry.
FIA: Future Homemakers of America for students enrolled in consumer homemaking and home economics related occupations courses in the secondary schools.
OEA: Office Education Association for students enrolled in office education occupations in the secondary and post-secondary schools.
VICA: Vocational Industrial Clubs of America for students taking trade, industrial, technical and health education courses in the secondary and postsecondary schools.
A new organization, designed to serve students in health occupations has been organized at the state level and will shortly seek a national charter. And there will be others.
The work of these organizations is integral to career education. They are by no means a frivolous and optional extra-curricular activity. Students are deeply involved at every stage. The organizations provide an indispensable emphasis on career and civic awareness, social competence and leadership ability. Few who have witnessed the work of these organizations at first hand question their value as essential instruments in career education. Their activities are characterized by a contagious kind of zest and enthusiasm all too rare in educational endeavors.
Yet these vital organizations are often obliged to operate in an atmosphere of grudging intolerance or kindly contempt. School principals too often consider their activities disruptive of more formal and fashionable educational processes.
The U.S. Office of Education gives little more than lip service to encourage vocational student organizations either nationally or regionally. They have been ignored in the guidelines for State Plans for Vocational Education.
State Chief School Officers offer little positive help and often deliberately deny vocational student organizations their right to participate in state, regional and national events,
Most school boards and chief school officers rarely recognize the work of Vocational youth organizations as an integral functional part of the curriculum. Classroom teachers, given little support from above, often understandably ignore the vast potential of vocational youth organizations,
As a result, the 1.5 million now being served falls far short of the potential nine million students currently enrolled in vocational education programs that these organizations could and should serve.
All this is wrong. We are in the process in America of freeing ourselves from some paralyzing myths about the educational process. One such myth, the one that thwarts the marvelous potential of vocational youth organizations, is the prehistoric notion that education is what happens in classrooms-and nothing else.
We must free ourselves of that ancient superstition. We must provide-at every level-a welcoming climate in which these vital organizations can grow to their full height. They must be given every reinforcement.
We, therefore, recommend that:
1. The President of the United States continue to give visibility to vocational student organizations, that he suggest appropriate legislation to the Congress, that he include in his budget support to establish, expand and extend these organizations throughout career education;
2. The Congress recognize vocational student organizations as integral to instructional programs in all areas of career education, and support them financially; 3. The U.S. Commissioner of Education provide support for vocational student organizations by:
(a) Drawing federal guidelines for future State Plans for Vocational Education which assure student organization programs an integral role in programs of instruction;
(b) Providing a guaranteed set-aside for student organizations in the U.S. Office of Education budget;
(c) Providing a number of staff positions to coordinate the activities of the various student organizations, to assure that their programs and activities are in harmony with national policies and objectives, and to assist in developing, expanding and promoting such organizations;
(d) Requiring teacher training institutions which receive federal funds to incorporate in their programs instruction in the methods, techniques and philosophy of student organizations;
4. The student organizations themselves must launch a massive campaign with financial and professional assistance from the U.S. Office of Education, to take their story to every local district, every State Board, every teachers' group, every State Legislature, the U.S. Congress, and to the general public; 5. The nation's mass media join in this effort;
6. Schools make the student organizations' programs available before grade 10 so students who leave school before completing twelve years of high school may be exposed to their dynamic programs.
GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE Report on VOCATIONAL EDUCATION COMPARED WITH NACVE RECOMMENDATIONS
1. GAO: Image. Vocational education has a bad image. Many students and parents believed "that the vocational education student was being trained to be a 'second-class' citizen, as opposed to the ideal of going to college.
NACVE: 1st Report. "At the very heart of our problem is a national attitude that says vocational education is designed for somebody else's children. . . . We have prompted the idea that the only good education is an education capped by four years of college. This idea, transmitted by our values, our aspirations and our silent support, is snobbish, undemocratic, and a revelation of why schools fail so many students."
2. GAO: Not enough money is available for vocational education.
NACVE: 1st Report: We recommend that substantial Federal funds be allocated to support curriculum development, teacher training, and pilot programs in vocational education."
5th Report: "We urge Congress to accept the responsibility of appropriating the full authorizations that have been provided for down through the years for vocational and technical education. Funds must be provided for full implementation immediately, as well as providing the necessary funds for future needs." 3. GAO: Vocational education vs. manpower training.-"An important factor to consider is the impact that vocational education programs have on an area's manpower training programs. Youth who are not exposed to a good vocational education program in secondary school, either because it is not available or because it is rejected due to an image problem would seem to be likely candidates for manpower training programs . . . these programs are a more expensive way to train people for jobs . . . finding ways to equip young peopleparticular high school students-with salable skills would seem to offer prospects for reducing future needs for manpower programs."
NACVE: 2nd Report: "The Federal government should invest at least as much money in reducing the flow of untrained youth as it invests in reducing the pool of unemployed, and most of the Federal investment should be concentrated in paying the additional cost of vocational and technical post-secondary institutions."
4. GAO: Counselling.—Teachers and counselors are academically oriented, do not know the advantages or vocationad education, and direct promising students away from vocational education.
NACVE: 6th Report: Recommends that "State Departments of Education require work experience outside of education for all school counselors who work with students and prospective students of vocational education.
"Counselor education institutions require at least one introductory course in Career Educaion and at least one practicum devoted to an on-site study of the business-industry-labor community.
"Responsible decision-makers embarks on a immediate major campaign designed to upgrade the vocational knowledge and career guidance skills of currently employed counselors.
"Concerted efforts, including computerized guidance systems, be made to get more accurate, timely data to counselors regarding vocational and technical training and job opportunities."
5. GÃO: Job placement.—Vocational education has been successful and has a good image in areas where the schools have a good record of job placement. NACVE: 3rd Report: "Every secondary school should be an employment agency." "It must become a priority national objective that schools in disadvantaged neighborhoods establish employment offices at once and accept a responsibility for removing barriers to the employment of their graduates." NACVE, under OEO funding, is conducting a survey on the feasibility of expanding the successful Cleveland School to Industry program to other cities,
which would involve the high schools in opening up job opportunities for its graduates.
6. GAO: Vocational education for the disadvantaged.-Funds for vocational education of the disadvantaged are not being used for this purpose.
NACVE: 3rd Report: "Give priority to programs for the disadvantaged without separating the disadvantaged from the mainstream of education.
2nd Report: “What the disadvantaged want and need is access to vocation al and technical programs for career preparation in the mainstream. Counseling, tutoring and other support and assistance are essential, but separateness destroys dignity."
7. GAO: Data on vocational education. One of the major purposes of a management information system is to develop data on program operations and results that can be used to assess program effectiveness. Much of the data from the states are incomplete or inaccurate.
NACVE: The Council is sponsoring Project Baseline, which was not acknowledged by the GAO, to develop a data reporting system so that accurate information can be obtained from every state. Council is also working with Bureau of Labor Statistics to find means to make Labor Department data more relevant to vocational education planners.
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