Harris School Solutions has been helping to pioneer innovative efforts both to promote and to improve the Career and Technical Education field for years.
As part of our efforts, we want to give you the blueprint you need in order to improve your CTE Student Placement rate.
1. Manage your employer data better.
The easier it is to manage your employer data, the more effort you can focus on actually getting your students placed (as opposed to wasting time trying to track down information for each student, or leaving them to fend completely for themselves).
To make the placement process more manageable, keep your Employer Information organized and easily accessible.
Create a list of all the employers in your area.
Include not only their contact information, but also associated job titles with pay rates and descriptions.
Keep the employers sorted by OAC (Occupational Advisory Committee) or cluster. This is helpful when organizing advisory meetings, especially for when you want to generate mailing labels for meetings or correspondence.
Maintain employer evaluations in order to provide evidence of student performance for post-secondary placement.
2. Increase the work-based learning at your CTE program.
Once you’re tracking organized employer data, don’t wait until graduation to use it. Incorporate internships and work-based learning into your program. This will give students a leg up by giving them experience and also by getting their foot in the door with an employer.
To manage CTE student work-based learning activities:
Assign students to specific employers, giving consideration to appropriate job title, job description, and pay rate as related to student interest.
Develop individualized Cooperative Education Training Plans which identify, track, and document:
Specific work-based learning experience. (Differentiate between Co-op, paid/unpaid internship, apprenticeship, summer job, etc.)
Equipment necessary to perform the job duties.
Evaluation of student performance:
3. Measure student success and evaluate your process.
It’s imperative not only to follow up with students, but also to get as much feedback as possible. This way you get a more accurate placement rate and more-detailed information about why your placement rate is what it is.
Once you know that, you can successfully adjust your strategy accordingly for the next class of students to experience even better results and a higher success rate.
To get more/better responses to your follow-up survey:
Reach students in a manner they will respond to: text messaging.
Text them each a link to complete your survey.
Do this both for work-based learning placement and for placement after graduation.
Also send a senior exit survey prior to graduation. This way, the students’ contact data will be in your system for future follow-up.
All of these steps may seem like a lot of hard work upfront, but it will pay off when you see your Student Placement rate increasing over time.
Remember: your CTE Student Placement Rate isn’t going to increase itself!