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To:†††††† Superintendents, Assistant Superintendents, High School Principals, and Curriculum Coordinators


From:†† Susan A. Gendron, Commissioner


Date:††† May 5, 2004


Re:†††††† Career Technical Education Revisioning Process




Maineís Career and Technical Education (CTE) schools face unprecedented challenges and perhaps unanticipated opportunities in the context of current secondary and postsecondary reform. Consider just a few of the issues currently on the table:


                          Changes in state and federal regulations regarding accountability for student achievement

                          The emergence of the community college system

                          The increasingly important role of information technology, including the Maine Learning Technology Initiative(MLTI) program, and its implications for Career and Technical Education

                          High school reform efforts such as Promising Futures

                          Postsecondary attainment symbolized by the Compact for Higher Education

                          Regionalization efforts

                          The challenges of a technology-based economy


While more demands are being placed on schools to meet the Maine Learning Results and the accountability standards of No Child Left Behind, Maine schools must continue to provide a wide array of learning opportunities that expand options for students, including Career and Technical Education. It is our responsibility to ensure that all students achieve the Learning Results and it is important that we do this in the manner by which they learn best. It is critical that Career and Technical Education develops a vision and a plan that capitalizes on the new initiatives and incorporates them with its own effective practices.


To that end, I have established a State Advisory Committee for Career and Technical Education. Deputy Commissioner Patrick Phillips and Mid-Coast School of Technology Director Tim Hathorne will co-chair the Committee. This committee will oversee the creation of a new vision for career and technical education and will make recommendations regarding the implementation of the new vision, including the identification of exemplary models, promising practices for ensuring that all students achieve the standards of Maineís Learning Results, and implications for curriculum, instruction, and assessment.




Other members of the Advisory Committee include:


                          Donald Cannan, Director, Lewiston Regional Technical Center

                          William Cassidy, President, Washington County Community College

                          Norm Higgins, Great Maine Schools and Center for Inquiry on Secondary Education (CISE)

                          Laurie Lachance, State Economist, State Planning Office

                          Geoffrey Nelson, Instructor, Westbrook Regional Vocational Center

                          Graham Nye, Superintendent, MSAD #40

                          Jim Rog, Professor, College of Education, University of Maine

                          Pete Thibodeau, President, Jobs for Maineís Graduates

                          Jack Norris, State Board of Education

                          Department staff members Yvonne Davis, CTE State Director; John Stivers, CTE Curriculum Coordinator; Shelley Reed, Alternative Education Consultant; Jackie Soychak, Policy Director for Federal Program Services, and Valerie Seaberg, Policy Director for Standards and Assessment


A principal task of the Advisory Committee will be to plan a broader stakeholder event to ensure that the new vision is based on wide involvement of educators, parents, students, businessmen and women, post-secondary representatives, and policymakers.Plans are currently being refined for a three-day event to be held on June 15-17, 2004 to conduct this phase of the work.


We are fortunate, indeed, to have secured the participation of nationally regarded researcher Dr. Willard Daggett, President of the International Center for Leadership in Education who will both keynote the event and participate in and guide the overall three-day process.Over the coming weeks, the Advisory Committee will be contacting potential participants across the State for the June event.The current plan is to re-assemble the stakeholder group in August or early September to critique and refine the vision and action plan for CTE in Maine.A final report will be completed and disseminated in the Fall.


If you have questions or comments, please contact either Yvonne Davis ( or John Stivers (