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New York State Program Approval Process

Core Premises for CTE

Quality CTE programs should achieve three outcomes:

  • Articulate to a postsecondary educational or training path leading to a two- or four-year degree or other credential;
  • Through instruction leading to industry-recognized credentialing, work-based learning experiences and opportunities for workplace acculturation, position completers for related career-track lower-level work while pursuing further education/training opportunities;and
  • Provide greater understanding of, and exposure to, future career options.

Key success metrics:

  • High school graduation
  • College enrollment 
  • Attainment of industry-recognized credentials
  • Employment outcomes
  • State approval of programs
  • Student credit accumulation and program completion


Positioning Students for Postsecondary Success

Current best practice, as well as published guidance such as the April 2012 CTE Blueprint for Reauthorization of the Carl D. Perkins Act (VTEA) and the 2008 NYC Mayoral Task Force on CTE Innovation Report, suggests this scalable approach to school-based career development:


Why Go Through CTE Program Approval?

High school students that graduate from an approved CTE program get:

  • A CTE endorsement on their diploma
  • A direct postsecondary pathway (e.g., industry certification, hands-on work experience for a resume, and/or a workforce connection outside the school building) 

High schools that administer an approved CTE program get:

  • Extra weighting on their NYC School Quality Snapshot (a CTE endorsed diploma is weighted the same as an Advanced Regents diploma) 
  • Eligibility for supplemental CTE funding (e.g., federal dollars)


Stages of Program Approval

Stage 1: Program Proposal Application

Notification of intent to open a new CTE program.

Stage 2: Self-Evaluation

Self-Evaluation of the quality of the CTE program and submission to NYCDOE

Stage 3: External Review

External Review and validation of application by NYCDOE

Stage 4: NYSED Approval

NYSED consideration for program approval

Program Accountability Form (Annual submission)

Every year programs must complete the Program Accountability Form to update the NYCDOE Central Office regarding significant program modifications.(i.e. changes in, technical assessment teachers, or program content.)


Quality Indicators

Curriculum and Instruction

Curriculum & Sequence of Courses 

  • Combines rigorous academic and technical content
  • Aligns to industry, Career Development Occupational, and Common Core standards
  • Faculty with state certification in academic and or/technical fields

Word document download CTE Program Approval Requirements

Work-based Learning

Career exploratory activities & internships in work setting

Work Skills Employability Profile


Word document download New York State Work-Based Learning Manual

Assessment and Accountability Measures

3-Part Technical assessment/Industry certification exam

  • Written, demonstration and project components that Lead to industry-recognized certification, licensing or credential
  • Data on student progress and performance

Feedback and validation of program design and content by industry partners

Post-secondary articulation agreement 

  • Provide smooth transition to continued education, training or entry into workforce based on completed CTE program of study
Program & School Capacity

Program evaluation and improvement

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