Posted inEducation

Senator to push voc school admission changes through budget amendment

SAYING HE’S FRUSTRATED by state inaction over ongoing enrollment inequities from admissions policies at vocational high schools, state Sen. John Cronin has filed an amendment to the Senate budget that would require the schools to use a lottery, rather than selective entry criteria, to choose incoming students. Vocational school admission policies have become a flashpoint […]

Posted inEducation, Opinion

Time to end discrimination in vocational school admissions

CAREER VOCATIONAL-TECHNICAL education is a powerful tool that can provide students desiring to enter the workforce with a path to high-wage, high-skill professions and the knowledge, critical thinking, and transferable skills to adapt to changing labor markets. The unique hands-on, project-based learning model utilized in CVTE can also catalyze entrance into post-secondary education, particularly for […]

Posted inEducation

In Mass., vocational success – and admissions debate 

THE STATE’S VOCATIONAL-TECHNICAL schools have long stood as one of the unheralded success stories of the education reform efforts begun in the early 1990s. A new book, published by Pioneer Institute, gives the schools their much-deserved due.  Hands-On Achievement: Massachusetts’s National Model Vocational-Technical Schools chronicles the history of vocational education and documents how schools that […]

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Coalition says proposed voc school admission changes don’t go far enough 

PROPOSED CHANGES TO vocational school admission policies, which the state has developed following years of pressure from municipal leaders and advocates, don’t go nearly far enough toward ensuring access to the schools for all students, says a coalition of civil rights, education, and community groups. The Vocational Education Justice Coalition is calling on the state […]

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State proposes sweeping change to vocational school admissions

FOUR YEARS AFTER elected officials and advocates began calling for changes to state regulations governing admission to vocational-technical high schools, Education Commissioner Jeff Riley is proposing a sweeping update to a system that critics say has let voc-tech schools “cream” higher-performing students while locking out English language learners, students of color, and special education and […]

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Advocates, mayors renew push for voc-tech admission changes

AFTER YEARS OF frustration with admission policies at Massachusetts vocational technical high schools, which they say shut out disadvantaged students who might benefit most from hands-on learning, a coalition of community groups and elected officials renewed the call Thursday for state officials to overhaul the entry system. Vocational schools, once derided as the “dumping ground” […]

Posted inEducation

Voc-tech schools thriving despite pandemic strictures 

HANDS-ON EDUCATION plays a critical role at Massachusetts regional vocational-technical high schools, where students alternate weekly between academics and shop classes. Given that reality, you’d think the schools would be particularly hard hit by the switch to hybrid models under which students are in a physical school building only half the time. But thanks to innovative approaches […]

Posted inEducation

As students leave district schools, charters and vocational schools see growth

MASSACHUSETTS PUBLIC SCHOOLS have seen a large decline in enrollment this year amid the COVID-19 pandemic.  But the drop is not spread evenly across the public school system. Both charter schools and vocational technical schools have actually seen population increases, even as attendance at traditional district public schools dropped precipitously.  The shift cannot be attributed solely to the pandemic, […]