the Skills Crisis And Workforce
Challenges of the New World Economy
4, Number 3, June 2011
submit articles and news items to the
NOCC office for inclusion in future newsletters and on the CRCC
NOCC newsletters are available at the NOCC/Resources
Center on Education
and Work, University of WI, Concourse Hotel, Madison WI, January
2012 . Call for proposals open unitl Sept. 9, 2011
the March 8 edition of Education
Week, Ronald A. Wolk, former
founder and editor of the publication, proposes the provocative
question "Why is it necessary to increase the use of testing
when we know from years of previous testing what the results will
"The High Stakes of Standards-Based Accountability", Wolk
cites as evidence three indisuptable facts:
NAEP has reported for decades (during which standardized testing was
emphasized if not increased) that only 3 out of 10 high school seniors
score at the 'proficient' level or above in reading, writing, math
and science, and that their scores decline dramatically from 4th grade
every 100 students who start the 9th grade, about 30 drop out and
another 35 or so graduate without being properly prepared either for
post-secondarye ducation or the modern workplace.
brunt of the failures fall on poor and minority children.
the Standards-Based approach is not working, he says. He suggests
that our problems started with a misdiagnosis of the problem back
in 1983 with the publication of A Nation At Risk and the
subsequent prioritization of raising standards mainly through standardized
testing. This approach, he continues, is in conflict with the mantra
of the school reform movement of the '80s and '90s of "all
children can learn".
the 1983 report also addressed the importance of attracting the
best and brightest trachers, training them well, compensating them
well, and giving them clear career pathways, we did not pursue these
very important points as aggressively
as we did the standarization of instruction and testing.
proposal for a new system for our schools will resonate with many
while infuriating others! He proposes a system of "personalized"
education. that is based on several key points
that sound "soft" compared with the standardization that
has occurred over the last 15 years.
education requires that teachers and students know one another.
education should be universal
in middle school, multiple pathways should lead to post-secondary
education to prepare students for a complex and changing world
student should play a role in designing the pathway curriculum which
would be anchored in the real world and not in abstractions
would be no 'traditional' core curriculum
classroom instruction would be minimal
learning would be assessed on the basis of portfolios, projects,
experiments, recitals, performances, etc.
tests would be used at transitional levels of schooling to monitor
achievement and school accountability purposes
article is well worth your time.
have a prevailing view in our society — not only in the policy
but in many spheres — that we are divided creatures. Reason,
trustworthy, is separate from the emotions, which are suspect. Society
progresses to the extent that reason can suppress the passions.
This has created a distortion in our culture. We emphasize things
are rational and conscious and are inarticulate about the processes
below. We are really good at talking about material things but bad
talking about emotion.
When we raise our kids, we focus on the traits measured by grades
SAT scores. But when it comes to the most important things like
character and how to build relationships, we often have nothing
Many of our public policies are proposed by experts who are comfortable
only with correlations that can be measured, appropriated and
quantified, and ignore everything else.
the last NOCC newsletter,
you were given a direct link to the February study
from Harvard University Pathways
This paper, and several others , are
available under the Resources tab of the NOCC
2011 edition of Diplomas Count: Beyond
High School, Before Baccalaureate from Education
Week addresses the issues raised in the Harvard study mentioned
above. 'College For All' Reconsidered: Are Four-Year Degrees For
All? is the lead article in the publication and in it, Anthony
P. Carnevale of the Center on Education and the Workforce at
Georgetown University observes that "The reform trajectory we've
been on since A Nation At Risk was a noble goal, but along
the way, we've set aside every pathway but one, and we've left a lot
of pepople behind". It was this shared sentiment that
resulted in the development in 2004 of the CRC and the associated
the editorial page of Diplomas Count are
summaries of analyses of graduation rates and developments in "credential
stacking" that aim to keep students in high school and that
allow them to graduate with workplace credentials. One such initiative
in Dearborn, MI was highlighted. In response to a shortage of healthcare
workers, an early college high school program in that city allows
students to graduate in 5 years with a high school diploma, as associates
degree, AND a certificate in a health-related occupation.
from Georgetown University, it is reported that by age 27, only
about 40% of US young people manage to earn either a baccalaureate
or an associate degree.
its findings on 2010 Census data, the EPE Research Center reports
that the 2008 national graduation rate was 71.7%, the highest it's
been since the 1980's. In particular, the overall graduation rate
for public high school students jumped 3% from 2007 to 2008; each
major racial and ethnic group posted gains of at least 2%, with
African-American students showing the greatest improvement. While
the gap between African-American students and their white counterparts
has closed by 2% over the last decade, the gaps between Latinos
and whites and between Native Americans and whites have widened
since 1999. Urban areas post the lowest overall high school graduation
California, a progam called Linked Learning
is demonstrating that academics and CTE don't have to be
mutually exclusive. John Snavely, Superintendent
of Porterville Unified School District (which has developed 9 career
pathways at 5 of its high schools) states "We want to make
sure that everyone is college--and career ready, that we don't end
up with a blue-collar track and a college-prep track". As part
of the initiative, the school district partnered with 6 California
State University campuses to develop training for pre-service teachers
in the pedagogy, teamwork, and curriculum design of the career-related
approach to education.
Diplomas Count because
every article is relevant o your work. There are many great ideas
in it that you could use and/or adapt.
2004, one goal of the 7 founding states of the CRC Consortium was
that the CRC would become the first layer of a series of stackable
credentials in various industry sectors. Since 2007, news of the evolution
of the CRC into stackable credentials has often been reported in this
newsletter. In particular, the development of CRC+ certificates has
increased over the last three years, and in a
2009 newsletter, a detailed report showcased certification of
manufacturing careers in Virginia, using the CRC as the basis of each
credential. Other initiatives from VA such as the requirement for
each apprentice to have a CRC, and the development of CRC+ creddentials
in the Health Sciences and Hospitality sectors were reported two years
ago by Gloria Westerman.
week , President
Obama announced the deployment of new credentials that have
been endorsed by the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM).
After pilot programs that were supported by the Gates and Lumina
Foundations, training curricula for these credentials are available
in 30 community colleges. This development and the President's endorsement
represent a partial realization of the original Consortium goal.
Congratulations are due to all Consortium states, organizations,
and community colleges who have made this a reality--a very remarkable
achievement in only 7 years!
you have recently been added to the NOCC newsletter mailing list,
you can read all previous 2011 newsletters
official contact for the CRC in Virginia is now "Mac"
McGinty, Vice President of the Community
College Workforce Alliance, a terrific organization within the
VA Community College System. Many of you will remember the great presentations
Mac made when the CRC initiative was just beginning. His dynamic,
enthusiastic, and intelligent presentations played a very important
role in getting many states into the Consortium, especially because
he works so closely with employers and could speak to their needs
and acceptance of the CRC. Mac was a key player in the original 5-college
pilot test that was conducted in VA during 2002 and that resulted
in Gov. Warner's statewide commitment to the CRC.
The NOCC has been asked to submit an article for the Fall 2011 Techniques
magazine that will feature credentialing efforts around the country.
You recently received an e-mail requesting information about innovative
programs and uses for the CRC in your state or organization that may
be included in this ACTE publication. There is to be particular emphasis
on how employers are using the credential and on its effectiveness
in helping people find professional positions. Arkansas was the first
to respond, and of course the news from the President and NAM will
be featured but the NOCC represents 50 states so we would like to
feature news from as many of those states as we can. All
of the information received will be placed on the CRC web site.
Consortium will be represented at several Fall conferences and the
presentations will showcase CRC news from the Consortium. This information
needs to be as up-to-date as possible so please send a paragraph
or two (500 words is a suggested length) to the NOCC by August 1.
The Top 10 list of states issuing
the CRC (with thanks to Bill Guest at NCRC Advocates for his data)
152,605 South Carolina
82,921 North Carolina
the information for your state is incorrect, please forward the
correct numbers. Thank you.
North Carolina CRC 2010 Year in Review is available here
and under the Resources tab of the NOCC
web site. Thanks to Stephanie Deese and Pam Gobel
for making this paper available.
April, NCRC Advocates issued a status report on the Career Readiness
Certificate movement. The paper is available here.
Thanks again to Bill Guest.
January, there have been significant changes in workforce development
agencies and in CRC offices across the country. Please
send updated information on state contacts and other news
to the NOCC
as soon as you can. Your information is
used in response to phone calls and in national presentations. It
is embarrassing to be told after a presentation that information shown
is out of date.
state CRC web sites now show direct links to the NOCC (www.nationalOCC.org)
and the CRC Consortium (www.crcconsortium.org)
sites. These links have greatly increased web traffic and have made
it much easier for the public to obtain information on the certificate.
Thank you for your help. If you do not have either/both of these links
on your site, we would be grateful if you would add them. The NOCC
logo is available for downloading at theResources tab at the web
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NOCC, June 2011