The Value and Promise of Career Technical Education: Results of a National Survey of Parents and Students

Today, Advance CTE, with support from the Siemens Foundation, released a new report addressing the CTE stigma challenge, and offering solutions to drive students and parents to consider CTE as an option for their education.

"The Value and Promise of Career Technical Education: Results from a National Survey of Parents and Students," explores the attitudes of parents and students currently involved in Career Technical Education (CTE), as well as prospective CTE parents and students, to improve understanding of the promise and opportunity of CTE.

The survey had many critical findings including that: 

  • More than double the percentage of CTE parents and students are "very satisfied" with their overall education experience compared to that of parents and students not involved in CTE, 
     

  • CTE parents and students are more likely to be satisfied with the quality of their classes, teachers and opportunities for career exploration.
      

  • Across the board, CTE programs are most valued for their ability to provide real-world skills within the education system, offering concrete and tangible benefits related to college and career success; 
     

  • Counselors, teachers and CTE students and alumni are among the most trusted sources of information for students and parents alike.

The report highlights findings that can help states, district and local leaders more effectively communicate with parents and students to encourage interested students to enroll in CTE programs. Advance CTE has developed a series of tools to help CTE leaders start this important work. 

Additional Findings:

91%

of parents of students in CTE believe their child is getting a leg up in their career, compared to only 44% of prospective parents. 

82%

of CTE students are satisfied with their ability to learnreal-world skills in school, compared to only 51% of non-CTE students. 

93%

of parents and students say 'finding a career that I/my child is passionate about' is important. 

80%

of parents of students in CTE are satisfied with their ability to participate in internships, compared to only 30% of prospective parents. 

77%

of CTE students are satisfied with their ability to earn credits towards acertification, compared to only 44% of students not enrolled in CTE.

2%

of CTE students who say they 'don't know' what they will do after high school, compared to 8% of non-CTE students.