February 28, 2018

Senate Passes Resolution Recognizing February as Career and Technical Education Month

WASHINGTON, D.C. – This week, the U.S. Senate passed a resolution introduced by Senators Todd Young (R-Ind.), Tim Kaine (D-Va.), Rob Portman (R-Ohio) and Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.), co-chairs of the Senate CTE Caucus, along with 41 bipartisan Senators. This resolution recognizes February 2018 as Career and Technical Education (CTE) Month.

“By designating February 2018 as Career and Technical Education Month, this resolution recognizes the importance of career and technical education and encourages more educators and students to seek out CTE programs. Preparing the students of today for the jobs of tomorrow will lead to more opportunities, a stronger economy, and a highly skilled workforce”said Senator Young, who hosted an event in Hammond, Ind. last week coinciding with CTE Month.

“Career and Technical education programs are preparing our workforce to compete for and succeed in the jobs of the 21st century,” Senator Kaine said. “This month, we take time to celebrate and recognize the critical role CTE programs and educators play in growing our economy and equipping students with the skills they need to excel.”

“Ohioans deserve the opportunity to acquire the skills needed for the jobs of today. When I travel around Ohio, manufacturers and employers of all sizes express concern about the ongoing work skills gap, so now is no time to wait,” Senator Portman said. “By naming February Career and Technical Education (CTE) Month, we are recognizing the importance of CTE in bridging the skills gap and connect hardworking students to good jobs. We must work together in a bipartisan fashion to ensure students have the opportunity to participate in these programs and reach their God-given potential.” 

“In my home state of Wisconsin, we have a long tradition of making things, and of investing in quality education – including career and technical education,” Senator Baldwin said. “CTE programs play a key role in providing students with the skills that employers need and lead to high-paying jobs and a path to the middle class. I am proud the Senate has recognized the value of these programs by designating February as CTE Month.”       

Full text of the resolution is available here and below. 

Supporting the goals and ideals of Career and Technical Education Month.

Whereas a competitive global economy requires workers who are prepared for skilled



Whereas, according to Deloitte and the Manufacturing Institute, 84 percent of executives

Agree that there is a talent shortage in manufacturing in the United States, including talent

for front line worker jobs such as machinists, operators, craft workers, distributors, and



Whereas career and technical education (referred to in this preamble as “CTE”) ensures that

competitive and skilled workers are ready, willing, and capable of holding jobs in high-wage,

high-skill, and in-demand career fields such as science, technology, engineering,

mathematics, nursing, allied health, construction, information technology, energy

sustainability, and many other career fields that are vital in keeping the United States

competitive in the global economy;


Whereas CTE helps the United States meet the very real and immediate challenges of

Economic development, student achievement, and global competitiveness;


Whereas the United States has 30,000,000 jobs with an average income of $55,000 per year

that do not require a bachelor’s degree yet increasingly require some level of postsecondary



Whereas nearly 12,000,000 students are enrolled in CTE across the country with CTE

Programs in thousands of CTE centers, comprehensive high schools, career academies, and

CTE high schools, and nearly 1,600 2-year colleges;


Whereas CTE matches employability skills with workforce demand and provides relevant

academic and technical coursework leading to industry-recognized credentials for secondary,

postsecondary, and adult learners;


Whereas CTE affords students the opportunity to gain the knowledge, skills, and credentials

needed to secure careers in growing, high-demand fields;


Whereas secondary CTE is associated with a lower probability of dropping out of high school

and a higher likelihood of graduating on-time;


Whereas CTE students were significantly more likely than non-CTE students to report having

developed problem-solving, project completion, research, math, college application, work

related, communication, time management, and critical thinking skills during high school;


Whereas, according to an American Federation of Teachers poll, 94 percent of parents

approve of expanding access to CTE and other programs that prepare students for jobs;


Whereas students at schools with highly integrated rigorous academic and CTE programs

have significantly higher achievement in reading, mathematics, and science than students at

schools with less integrated programs; and


Whereas February 23, 2018, marks the 101st anniversary of the signing of the Act of February

23, 1917 (commonly known as the “Smith-Hughes Vocational Education Act of 1917”) (39

Stat. 929, chapter 114), which was the first major Federal investment in secondary CTE and

laid the foundation for the bipartisan, bicameral support for CTE that continues as of

February 2018: 

Now, therefore, be it 

Resolved, That the Senate— 

(1) designates February 2018 as “Career and Technical Education Month” to celebrate career and technical education across the United States; 

(2) supports the goals and ideals of Career and Technical Education month;

(3) recognizes the importance of career and technical education in preparing a well-educated and skilled workforce in the United States; and

(4) encourages educators, guidance and career development professionals, administrators, and parents to promote career and technical education as a respected option for students.