CTE – Frequently Asked Questions

What is CTE?
Career and technical education is a program developed around industry sectors that integrate core academic and technical knowledge to provide students with a pathway to post-secondary education and careers. With California’s investment in career pathways, it is a great time to build a bridge to the future through CTE. Students can explore careers in a variety of industries and begin to build technical and professional “soft skills” that prepares them to be both college and career ready. In these hands-on, project based learning programs, students build skills that are transferable to any career. Students in CTE courses have opportunities to interact with industry through guest speakers, field trips, competition and showcase events.

What is a CTE Pathway?

A CTE pathway is a sequence of 2 or more courses in the same industry sector. Students completing the pathway are equipped with technical and professional skills for career entry or for continued education in college/university after high school. Some singleton, CTE courses are offered that are not in a pathway.

Can I change pathways?

Once a student starts a pathway, it is recommended that they continue the sequence, but this is not required. To be a pathway completer, students need to finish at least two CTE courses in the pathway, including the final capstone course. Students have the freedom to change pathways, and take stand-alone electives for enrichment.

Can I take just the 1st year course?

Year 1 and Year 2 CTE courses can be taken as singleton courses. Some students find they want to explore multiple careers and take the year 1 course in different pathways, or there is no room in their schedule to take the advanced, completer course.  Can I skip the year 1 course in a pathway? With permission from the instructor, students who have demonstrated advanced technical skills and team work and collaboration skills, may be able to enroll in the year 2 course. Eighth grade students demonstrating advanced skills in Engineering/Robotics or Digital, Visual  edia/Video may enroll in year 2 with permission from both the middle and high school teachers.

Can I get college credit for completing a CTE course?

Many CTE courses have an articulation agreement with a community college that recognizes the high school course as being equivalent to the college course. Graduates who enroll in the community college may receive college credit for the high school articulated CTE course. Ask your counselor which colleges offer credit for articulated courses and how you can get college credit when you enroll in the college.

Why should I be a CTE pathway completer?

Graduates say they had more real-world opportunities in  CTE courses. CTE participants in high school enter college and careers with the ability to be innovative, critical thinkers because they have learned to connect their core academic courses with transferable, professional skills. CTE  programs infuse industry connections through guest speakers, tours, competition and showcase events where students receive feedback from industry professionals.

Is CTE for college-bound students?

Yes, CTE is a great way to prepare for college by distinguishing yourself with skills that will transfer to any  career. CTE pathway completers are also prepared for life after college because pathways connect academic learning to real-world applications.

Are CTE pathway courses UC a-g?

Most of IUSD CTE courses are approved for the UC-a-g designation. Over the last several years, UC has helped facilitate the development of courses that advance CTE knowledge while meeting the academic requirements for admission to California’s public universities. More than 11,000 CTE courses meet the a-g requirement. 

Can 9th grade students enroll in a CTE course?

Yes. CTE courses are available to ninth graders. Enrollment is dependent on whether there is room in your schedule during the period in which the course is taught. After school ROP courses are good options to explore a career and are available to students in grades 9 through 12.

Is CTE available in the middle school?

Hands-on career exploration courses are offered in Engineering/Robotics, and in Digital Visual Media and Video production. Middle schools is a good time to explore a career and to build skills that will help you in any career and in college. These skills include critical thinking, problem solving and working in teams to create a product.

What is dual enrollment?

In partnership with Irvine Valley College, IUSD offers a few college courses that are taught at the high school, during the bell schedule and after school. Although these courses may not be CTE pathway courses, they do prepare students with college and career readiness skills. Students enrolled in the course may receive credit on both the IUSD high school transcript and the IVC college transcript.

What is an ROP course?

ROP (Regional Occupation Program) is a state funded public education program. IUSD partners with Coastline ROP to offer CTE courses, in-bell, after school and during the summer for students in grades 9-12. Many courses are UC a-g approved and internships are available. Visit the College  and Career at your high school to find out about all the possibilities to explore a career and get high school credit. The ROP course schedule is on the web at www.coastlinerop.net .