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Radio Alegria Features Bryan ISD's CTE Programs

Information from a 9 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 6 Radio Alegria interview with Ginger Carrabine, Bryan ISD chief of staff, is below. 

What is your role in Bryan ISD?

I am the Chief of Staff, and this is my second year in Bryan ISD. Prior to joining the school district, I worked in Fort Bend ISD which is in a suburb of Houston. Fort Bend ISD is a large district with 76,000 students.

We have invited you here today to talk to us about Career and Technical Education in Bryan ISD. What do you want to share with the community?

I would like to talk about the Career & Technical Education program, also known as the CTE program in Bryan ISD, and all that we offer our students.

I also want to share information about the CTE Center that will open next August. The student interest application to attend courses at the CTE Center opened on October 1 and will remain open through October 31. 

What is Career and Technical Education?

Career and Technical Education is often referred to as CTE. In the past, some people knew it as vocational education. CTE provides hands-on experiences and academics to prepare students to enter the workforce, college, or a combination of work and college as some students need to have a good job to help pay for college. 

CTE classes are designed with an emphasis on providing students with real world, real life skills while preparing students for high-demand, high-wage careers.

How are CTE courses different from other courses that students take in high school?

Students have to take a certain number of core classes in order to earn a high school diploma and graduate. The required core courses include different levels of English, math, science, and social studies courses. In addition, students also take classes such as PE, Fine Arts, and other electives such as CTE courses.

Tell us more about CTE programs and courses.

Career and Technical Education programs offer a sequence of courses that provide students with coherent and rigorous content.

Some of the courses are offered in Middle Schools, but most are found in High Schools. 

What types of CTE courses are offered for students in Bryan ISD?

Fortunately, for students in Bryan ISD, we offer 94 different courses through 27 different CTE program areas.

CTE courses are divided into 16 career clusters with different pathways and many different courses. This information is explained on our Bryan ISD website on the CTE webpage. Students and parents can also meet with the high school counselors to learn more about the different classes.

An example of a CTE career cluster offered now at Bryan High School and Rudder High School is manufacturing. In this career cluster, we offer welding courses for students and an opportunity to learn how to weld and earn a welding certification if the student takes the required number of courses and completes the required number of hours with hands-on welding. This is a fantastic skill for students looking to get a job in this field as it is considered high wage and high demand.

Another example of a CTE career cluster offered at Bryan High School and Rudder High School is transportation. For this cluster, we offer automotive technology courses and the opportunity for students to learn how to use sophisticated machinery in the automotive technology industry. Students can also earn a certification if they take the required number of courses and complete the required hands-on automotive experience. This is another excellent opportunity as the automotive service industry is high wage and high demand. 

We offer many different career clusters, pathways, and courses at Bryan High School and Rudder High School and will offer courses at the new CTE Center next year.

Are CTE courses offered in all school districts?

Yes, every school district provides CTE courses but schools may offer more or less so courses may be different.

How is career and technical education different from vocational education that was offered years ago?

CTE programs are transformed programs of study that no longer resemble the vocational education programs of previous decades. As we prepare students for emerging and future careers, CTE coursework must include technical knowledge in specific program areas, while applying the skills learned in core content classes.

Tell us more about the new CTE Center that will open for students next August 2019.

Bryan ISD is excited about the land and buildings that we purchased on Mumford Road in Bryan. We are currently working on plans for design and construction to get the buildings ready for the students.

What courses will be offered at the new CTE Center?

The center will offer four different program courses for junior and senior level students.

  1. Welding
  2. Automotive Technology
  3. Construction Science
  4. Industrial Engineering and Robotics

Core content = science or English

If the student attends courses at the CTE Center, will they spend the whole day there and take all high school courses at the center?

The students who attend courses at the center will spend about half of the school day at the home campus and the other half of the day at the center.

For example, they may take classes at the CTE Center in the morning and then return to Rudder High School or Bryan High School for the other half of the day in the afternoon. Or, the student may start their day at Rudder High School or Bryan High School and then travel to the CTE Center in the afternoon for the remainder of the day to take the CTE courses and the core class such as English or science.

Will the district provide bus service to transport students from Rudder High School and Bryan High School out to the new CTE Center?

We will provide buses to transport students to the CTE Center from Rudder High School and Bryan High School.

What if the student cannot attend classes at the CTE Center? Are these courses offered at Bryan High School and Rudder High School?

We are planning to offer welding, automotive technology, and construction science at Rudder High School and Bryan High School. The industrial engineering & robotics class will only be offered at the CTE Center.

There are many other CTE courses that will continue to be offered at Bryan High School and Rudder High School such as culinary, cosmetology, barbering, health sciences, agriculture mechanics, Project Lead the Way for engineering, floral design, and many others.

Also, if the student attends Bryan Collegiate, we also offer a few different CTE courses there.

Who do parents and students need to contact to learn more about CTE or to sign up for courses at Rudder High School and Bryan High School?

Parents and students can contact school counselors at Bryan High School or Rudder High School. They can also go to the Bryan ISD website (bryanisd.org/cte) or contact the Director of CTE, Mr. David Reynolds at 979-209-2606.

Who do parents and students need to contact to learn more about CTE or to sign up for courses at the new center for next year?

If a student is interested in taking one of the courses at the new CTE Center, the student or parent must complete the online student interest form that is found on the Bryan ISD website (bryanisd.org/cte) by Oct. 31. Students and parents can also meet with the school counselors or contact the CTE director.

We know that these CTE courses are for students in high school but what about students in elementary? What can parents do to prepare them to take these classes as they get older?

Parents should always encourage their children to do their very best in all classes at school. Parents should also encourage their children to pursue what interests them at that time as well as be thinking about their future. We want our students to be well rounded and have many experiences in school. We also encourage all parents to talk to teachers and school counselors about opportunities to make sure every student reaches their full potential.

Bryan ISD is a great school district and we offer so many choices for our students. We invite parents to be active partners in the schools and to work with us to position all children for success while in school. We want all students to be successful when they leave our school system.

BRYAN ISD
Children First. Always

 

Additional Information

CTE: Visit bryanisd.org/cte for more information about Bryan ISD's award-winning career and technical education offerings.

Radio Alegria Interviews: Tune in to the next Bryan ISD segment on 102.3 FM, 1240 AM or radioalegria1240am.com 9 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 20.