Oped: Voc Tech

This op-ed appeared in Commonwealth Magazine and New Bedford Standard Times. A recent visit to Greater New Bedford Regional Vocational Technical High School demonstrated why career and technical high schools are rightly considered a Massachusetts success story. But it also serves as a reminder that we must not let them become victims of their success....
Read this full op-ed in CommonWealth magazine. By Tom Birmingham and Ken Campbell Years of missteps are leaving students behind “SUCCESS IS TO BE measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life,” said Booker T. Washington, the famous turn-of-the-20th-century black educator, “as by the obstacles… overcome.” February is both Black History and...
Read this entire op-ed online at CommonWealth Magazine, the New Bedford Standard Times, The Berkshire Eagle, and The Salem News. Written by Tom Birmingham MASSACHUSETTS VOCATIONAL-TECHNICAL high schools are like the person who toils for years, only to be termed an “overnight sensation” when he or she finally achieves recognition. For over a decade the schools have quietly...
There are three proven ways to reduce dropout rates that address this problem: regional vocational-technical schools, digital learning, and a serious refocusing on academic learning.
http://boston.com/community/blogs/rock_the_schoolhouse/2012/06/a_big_test_at_madison_park_voc.html In fact, it is arguable that the 2010 legislation provides even less flexibility than the enabling Horace Mann charter statute (1997).  The 2010 law takes dozens of pages to describe the meaning flexibility available to (and the laundry list of processes and signoffs needed to move ahead with) an innovation school. While I am...
http://www.berkshireeagle.com/editorials/ci_20250784/pivotal-role-vocational-education According to U.S. Department of Labor statistics, the stagnant manufacturing industry has enjoyed a comeback in the state and nation, and the main factor jeopardizing that growth is a lack of skilled labor. The decline of the industry created a gap between the pre-collapse skilled machinists who lack computer skills and the post-collapse work...