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Ohio Association for Career and Technical Education

Career TEchnical AND Adult Education News

  • March 14, 2020 1:38 PM | Anonymous
    Event cancellations as of March 14, 2020:
    • All CTSO in-person events cancelled through April 13.  See related article- click here.
    • *OCTA Conference, March 18-20
    • *Success Bound,Northeast Ohio Region - May 4
    • *PACE/OTDN Conference, April 2-3

    *Ohio ACTE handles registration for these events.  Paid attendees will receive full refunds in the form in which the registration was paid, either check or credit card.  REFUNDS WILL BE AUTOMATIC. No need to call/email to request a  refund.  Checks payments received but not yet processed will be returned.  Your patience is requested and appreciated as we process all of the refunds in as timely manner as possible.

  • March 14, 2020 7:36 AM | Anonymous

    The U.S. Department of Education (USDOE) said it will consider "targeted, one-year" waivers of federal accountability measures on student participation and absenteeism for schools closing for an extended period. Gov. Mike DeWine ordered all schools to close from the end of the day Monday, March 16 through Friday, April 3.

    UDDOE also shared FAQ documents (see link below) for schools on student privacy considerations amid the outbreak, as well as how to navigate the laws and regulations on education for students with disabilities amid the outbreak.

    In another video message to schools, Superintendent Paolo DeMaria reiterated  "We will waive state requirements that stand in the way of us being successful," DeMaria said.

    DeMaria said the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has approved the state's waiver request in order to offer school meals to-go, and said he's hoping the federal agency will also grant the state's request to be able to deliver meals. DeWine also addressed the meal situation in his daily briefing on Friday. (See separate story, this issue).

    Addressing the prospect of remote learning amid the school closings, DeMaria said, "The governor wants us to make an effort to provide education to students through alternative means." The superintendent said approaches will differ by school and urged them to think creatively, saying the Ohio Department of Education (ODE) will offer support.

    However, one potential source of access to computers and technology for students, local libraries, are also feeling the effects of the virus, with many announcing closings. (See separate story, this issue.)

    Mandy Minick, press secretary for ODE, said the agency recognizes the differences in resources available to schools.

    As to the governor's call for education through alternative means, Minick said in an email, "We are telling schools this statement indicates that they should try to make a good faith effort within available capabilities to support continued learning outside of school."

    Charter Communications said it would offer its Spectrum broadband and Wi-Fi service for free for 60-days, including waiver of installation fees, for households with K-12 or college students who do not already have the service. The company also said it will open Wi-Fi hotspots across the company's footprint for public use.

    Two members of the House, Reps. Jeffrey Crossman (D-Parma) and Lisa Sobecki (D-Toledo) wrote a letter Friday to DeMaria and DeWine urging the cancellation of state testing for the rest of the school year.

    "Now that the governor has closed the schools, it is unfair to students, parents, and educators to have these tests hanging over their heads upon their return," Crossman said in a statement. "There simply will not be sufficient time to properly prepare students for these tests and to complete the remaining coursework for the academic year."

    "Failing to cancel these tests now will only create more anxiety among the community and will result in an overly extended school year, which no one wants. People should be concerned about staying well during this unprecedented crisis," Sobecki said in a statement.

    The USDOE FAQ on student privacy is available at .

    The USDOE FAQ on education for students with disabilities is available at .

    ODE is maintaining an FAQ for schools and a running list of agency meetings it has cancelled on its website at

  • March 13, 2020 10:59 AM | Anonymous

    Ohio ACTE Members:


    Ohio ACTE leaders recognize the disruptions, anxiety, and distress to members caused by COVID-19. Our deepest concern is for students as well as the health and well-being of all of Ohio’s citizens, and we support Governor DeWine’s decision to protect Ohioans. I know that career-tech educators display innovation and resiliency on a regular basis and this unprecedented experience will bring out the best in our educators.


    As you know, Gov. DeWine has ordered schools closed for the next three weeks, beginning at the end of the school day on March 16.   In a teleconference yesterday that included State Superintendent of Public Instruction DeMaria, Governor DeWine, ODE staff and other association leaders, the Governor stressed the importance of all educators working together for students, and that we all need to be flexible during this trying time.


    I know from my experience working with many career-tech educators and visiting you, your schools and programs that each of you will approach this experience from the viewpoint of “how can I help?” and display patience as guidance is issued from the Ohio Department of Education and school leaders determine how to best continue to educate students.   It is in this spirit that we – educators, students and parents – will all get through this unprecedented experience.


    As an association, Ohio ACTE will work hard to support members so you can focus on your students.  Ohio ACTE will diligently represent career-technical education as guidance is developed for schools, and we will collaborate with the Ohio Association of Career Technical Superintendents and Ohio Association of Comprehensive and Compact Career-Technical Schools. 


    It is the characteristics of our career-technical education community – resiliency, innovation and caring – that I know will get us not just through the school closures, but the COVID-19 concern overall.


    Ohio ACTE also asks for your understanding as events are cancelled and we deal with the follow up of those cancellations.


    Your Ohio ACTE leaders will continue to keep you updated and communicate as much as we learn, as well as determine how we can best serve our members during this time.  We will include updates on our website, as available.


    In summary, Ohio ACTE would like to assure you that we will provide as much information and resources as we can while we all work through the challenges presented by COVID-19.  


    Thank you in advance for your resiliency and flexibility,


    Christine Gardner

     Executive Director

  • March 12, 2020 5:19 PM | Anonymous

    Ohio Governor Mike DeWine has announced that due to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, he has ordered that all kindergarten through 12th grade schools close for a period of several weeks. 

    Beginning at the conclusion of the school day on Monday, March 16, all K-12 schools will close to students through Friday, April 3. This order includes all public, community, and private K-12 schools in the state, but does not apply to Ohio’s childcare system such as daycare centers and home-based childcare providers.

    During this extended period of closure, schools should work to provide education through alternative means and school district leadership may make decisions on whether to use their school buildings. Staff members should continue to report to school as directed by administrators.

    "We want to thank educators and administrators for the extraordinary efforts they will take to continue offering services during this time of national crisis," said Governor DeWine.

    Over the next 72 hours, the Ohio Department of Education will develop guidance for K-12 schools to ensure the continuity of important student services, including a strategy for providing meals.

  • March 11, 2020 5:26 PM | Ohio ACTE (Administrator)

    The following has been developed in collaboration with the Ohio Department of Health, Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose and the Ohio Department of Education and is being provided to school districts hosting polling locations at their schools.

    As we know, the Ohio Department of Health follows the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) interim guidelines to prevent the introduction and spread of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) into schools.  Schools should continue to collaborate, share information, and review plans with local health officials to help protect the whole school community, including those with special health needs.

    Specific to Election Day, it’s important to note that Election Day is different from other large public events or gatherings. Unlike large gatherings like the Arnold Fitness Classic or high attendance conferences, voting on election day takes place in small communities of neighbors who are more likely than not to interact in other ways every day – whether at the grocery store, in church, or elsewhere. Unlike other large public events or gatherings, Election Day does not reflect a situation where bigger crowds from geographically different areas come into one tight space, which could cause greater concerns about virus transmission.

    Additionally, and as you know, polling locations at schools already are partitioned from the student population and measures are taken to ensure that students and voters do not interact. The Ohio Secretary of State has provided guidance to county boards of elections regarding the appropriate and regular cleaning of voting equipment.

    Finally, and per the CDC, it’s recommended that schools continue to clean frequently touched surfaces (e.g., doorknobs, light switches, countertops) with the cleaners typically used. Use all cleaning products according to the directions on the label.


    If your school is not already scheduled to be closed for instruction on Election Day that option may certainly be considered if there are concerns about students being in the building while voters are present.

    For more information on general guidelines for schools regarding response to coronavirus, visit

  • March 11, 2020 7:19 AM | Ohio ACTE (Administrator)

    In response to news of the COVID-19 virus and its appearance in Ohio, Governor Mike DeWine issued an Executive Order on March 9, declaring a state of emergency in Ohio. On March 11, Gov. DeWine issued this letter.

    Subsequently, the career-technical education community issued the following statement in support of the DeWine Administration’s continued efforts to protect Ohioans:

    The community of Ohio career technical educators appreciates and supports Governor Mike DeWine’s leadership in protecting the health and safety of all Ohioans, especially our school children.  The organizations representing career-tech educators, including Ohio Association of Career Technical Education, Ohio Association of Career Technical Superintendents and the Ohio Association of Comprehensive and Compact Career-Technical Schools, are in regular contact with Administration staff and leadership from the Department of Health and the Ohio Department of Education. ODE representatives continue to provide various updates and guidance as available, including information on school operations and extracurricular activities impacted by COVID-19.  The organizations will continue to  monitor executive orders or proposed legislation and keep educators apprised and aware of the ever-evolving situation and activities impacted.

    The Ohio Department of Health has also released critical information, and educators are encouraged to collaborate with their local department of health in order to determine an appropriate course of action at the local level.

    Information from the Ohio Department of Health can be accessed here:

    The Ohio Department of Education held a teleconference March 9 with guidance and updates for education stakeholder groups. ODE also created the following website where educators can get information:

    Upcoming Career Technical Student Organization (CTSO) events (DECA and BPA) were cancelled due to the outbreak, and ODE staff is working with career-tech educators to find alternatives to the face-to-face competitions.  (See related article).  No decisions other than the cancellation of these two upcoming events taking place this weekend have been made yet, according to ODE, but a web page has been created for cancellation updates, accessible here:

    Information for schools that act as polling locations is provided by ODE, click here.

    “This is an unprecedented situation for Ohio’s education community, and Ohio ACTE leadership is grateful for the continued, robust collaboration with our colleagues at the Ohio Department of Education, including Career Tech Director Leah Amstutz and other ODE staff,” said Christine Gardner, Ohio ACTE Executive Director.  “State Superintendent of Public Instruction Paolo DeMaria has also provided strong leadership, fostering communication among stakeholders to keep students safe, as well as determining alternatives that minimize disruption to student learning—including extracurricular activities and competitions,” she added.

     Leaders in the career tech organizations will continue to monitor legislation, Executive Orders and other information to ensure the interests of career tech education—including its students and teachers—are considered in any relevant policy discussions.

    Ohio ACTE will continue to provide updates on its website as they become available.

  • March 10, 2020 3:59 PM | Ohio ACTE (Administrator)

    On March 9, 2020, Governor DeWine issued an executive order declaring a state of emergency in Ohio due to the COVID-19 outbreak. The Ohio Department of Education, Business Professionals of America, Ohio Association, and Ohio DECA remain committed to protecting the health, safety, and welfare of its members.  Therefore, the 2020 BPA State Leadership Conference and the 2020 DECA Career Development Conference are cancelled.

    ODE has created a website for updated cancellations:

    In lieu of the scheduled event, ODE staff is meeting with the board, teacher advisory group, and necessary stakeholders to discuss possible competitive alternatives, financial resolutions, and more.  "We recognize this is not an ideal situation, but the safety and well-being of members, volunteers, and staff is our top priority."

    Governor Mike DeWine and Ohio Department of Health asks all Ohioans to engage in and promote the practice of everyday preventive actions.

  • March 09, 2020 12:08 PM | Ohio ACTE (Administrator)

    Ohio ACTE is pleased to announce the 2020 Educator Award winners! Nominated by their peers, the Educator Awards recognize those who go above and beyond in their role to make sure students are learning, growing, and thriving in their career-tech experience. Their tireless effort ensures that career-tech schools are continuing to offer the best education possible for all learners.  Here are the 2020 award winners:

    • Administrator of the Year: Dennis Franks–Pickaway Ross
    • Teacher of the Year: Derek Fitzer–South-Western City Schools Career Academy
    • Career Guidance: Corinne Magensky–Four Cities Compact
    • New CTE Teacher: Rebecca McCowan–Great Oaks Career Campuses
    • Outstanding Teacher in Community Service: Sara Plozay–Upper Valley CC
    • Post-Secondary Teacher of the Year: Joy Shepherd–Apollo CC
    • Ambassador Award: Susan Schwalbauch–Pickaway ESC
    • Business Image Award: Bill Swan—Business Partner with Auburn CC
    • Outstanding School Board Members: Julie Wagner Feasel—Delaware Area CC & Paul Stefanko—Auburn CC

    Visit to learn more about these educators from the people who nominated them and the remarkable things they do for career-tech education and the students they serve.

  • March 04, 2020 7:02 AM | Ohio ACTE (Administrator)

    Emergency plans that schools are required to submit to the state should include responses to flu and other disease outbreaks as a best practice, and the Ohio Department of Education is encouraging schools to review their plans in light of the spread of coronavirus.

    The FAQ on coronavirus can be found by clicking on the following link:

    ODE specifically urged schools to review the "medical: pandemic" component of each building plan, as well as the "recovery" and "continuity of operations" portions of the plan.

    "As part of the emergency management plan, schools should have established procedures for determining when to close a school; how to communicate information to parents, students, staff and the community about the closing; and procedures for decontaminating facilities if necessary," ODE said.

    The department also encouraged school officials to consider doing the following:

    - Refresh their relationship with their local health department and county emergency management agency and ensure their awareness of local health emergency procedures in their communities.

    - Convene Planning Team/Safety Committees to ensure awareness of emergency procedures.

    - Modify emergency management plans as may be necessary in light of a review.

    - Ensure contact information for staff and student families is up to date.

    - Ensure that administrator contact information is current in OH/ID at the Ohio Department of Education.

    More information on school safety plans is at

  • March 02, 2020 9:51 AM | Ohio ACTE (Administrator)

    Guided by Each Child, Our Future, Ohio is on a mission to ensure high school inspires students to identify paths to future success and students have multiple ways to demonstrate the knowledge, skills and dispositions necessary for high school graduation and beyond. Whether a graduate chooses to enter the workforce, pursue a postsecondary education, enlist in the military or engage in a meaningful, self-sustaining vocation, Ohio’s high school graduates will be challenged, prepared and empowered for their lives after high school. 

    To advance the One Goal outlined in Each Child, Our Future, today, the Ohio Department of Education released guidance on the new long-term graduation requirements, including competency scores for both English language arts II and algebra I. The guidance document provides more information on the competency scores and detailed information about each of the state-defined seals. Updates will be made to the document as more information becomes available. Please note the version date at the bottom of the document.

    To meet graduation requirements, students, as always, will complete their required courses and take the required state tests. Additionally, students now will demonstrate competency in the foundational areas of English language arts and mathematics or through alternative options, which include College Credit Plus, career-focused activities or military enlistment. Students also will demonstrate readiness for their post-high school paths by earning two diploma seals that allow them to demonstrate important foundational and well-rounded academic and technical knowledge, professional skills, social and emotional competencies, and leadership and reasoning skills. These important sets of knowledge, skills and dispositions are necessary for high school graduates to be successful in the workplace, college, the military or other self-sustaining professions.

    Regarding competency scores, Ohio law directed the Department of Education, in collaboration with the Ohio Department of Higher Education and Governor’s Office of Workforce Transformation, to establish competency scores for the English language arts II and algebra I end-of-course tests. After gathering feedback from Ohio’s education stakeholders and business communities, the Department determined “competency” would be set at a score of 684 for both the English language arts II and algebra I tests.

     If you have any questions, contact Graham Wood at

Ohio Association for Career and Technical Education

38 Commerce Park Dr. Suite D, Westerville, Ohio
(614) 890-ACTE (2283)
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