Career and Technical Education (CTE) provides all students access to high-quality, rigorous career-focused programs that result in attainment of credentials with labor market value.
There is no denying COVID-19 has created challenges, especially for CTE teachers whose classroom lessons are rich with hands-on learning experiences. In true San Juan School District fashion, Career and Technical Education teachers are still providing students with learning opportunities. Career and Technical Education is going strong, even offering new opportunities and programs for students amid the challenges of the pandemic.
Computer Science For All is an initiative to increase computer science literacy in grades K-12 and will provide enriching computer science and robotics learning opportunities for San Juan School District students. Computer Science is not just for students who are interested in technology. Technology is a part of our every-day-life, and computer science can be integrated into many other aspects of curriculum in the classroom. Students can participate in the Code to Success program, giving them a foundation in coding language. By learning to code, students can put themselves in a position to secure better-paying employment in the future. Robotics kits are available throughout the district for classroom use, further developing Computer Science skills and providing students opportunities to develop plans, troubleshoot problems, and find inventive solutions to challenges presented to them.
Health Science pathways are also enriching student learning. San Juan School District is fortunate to work with USU Health Sciences and Utah Navajo Health Services (UNHS) to provide hands-on learning opportunities for students. Health science classrooms, complete with necessary lab equipment, will be available to students at Whitehorse and Monument Valley High School. With the installment of these classroom labs, health science students across the district will have the opportunity to earn a CNA (Certified Nursing Assistant) credential while still in high school. The CNA certification will allow them to gain employment in the health field while continuing their education in the health science field.
Increased Digital Arts opportunities are also becoming available for secondary students within the district. Classes such as Digital Graphics, Commercial Photography, and Video Production are available for students to try their hand at the digital art world. Many students learn how their artistic abilities can be digitized, creating new opportunities to develop and pursue their interest in art.
Students interested in becoming a teacher can take classes in the “Teaching As A Profession” pathway. It is exciting to see students begin their education pathway and return to San Juan County as educators.
Still in development, an electro-mechanical technician pathway will provide students with knowledge and experience to jumpstart a career in power and energy systems.
San Juan School District is excited to offer these new programs to students while emphasizing that existing pathways in Agriculture, Business, Construction, Architecture, Family and Consumer Science, Engineering, Computer Programming, Welding, and Automotive are providing students with skills and knowledge. CTE students can earn Skills Certifications and Industry Certifications that are recognized by employers throughout the state.
Each school has Career and Technology Student Organizations such as FFA, FBLA, DECA, HOSA, and SkillsUSA that enhance classroom knowledge and skills. Even in a virtual world, they allow students to showcase their knowledge and skills in region, state, and national competitions.
As CTE teachers and staff, we are very excited our programs and the future opportunities that it will provide all students within the San Juan School District.