The Outer Banks Voice – Currituck schools seek new HS degree track


Currituck schools seek new HS degree track

By Mark Jurkowitz | Outer Banks Voice March 30, 2022

Additional academic path for students heading to the job market

Matt Lutz, Superintendent of Currituck Schools.

Seeking an alternative route to a high school diploma designed for those entering the workforce rather than college, the Currituck County Board of Education passed a resolution March 15 asking to the State Board of Education to provide an “additional degree track that recognizes and values ​​Vocational and Technical Education.

Presenting the resolution at the March 15 meeting, Board of Education member Bill Dobney asserted that “the State Board of Education is doing a disservice to many of our students… by not offering vocational career technical education. [diploma] Track.”

Citing all the new construction going on in Currituck County, work that is creating jobs in construction, plumbing, HVAC and related trades, Dobney added, “I just wish our students had these job opportunities. , and we need another career.”

A key point of the resolution is crystallized in its first sentence, which states: “ALL students want to Where need of go to college”, the resolution later stating that “students who earn a trade or vocational degree have the opportunity to pursue meaningful careers and accumulate little or no student loan or college debt”.

Currituck Schools Superintendent Matt Lutz, who cited Dobney as a key force behind the effort, told The Voice that the push for a new degree track is designed to create “alternative routes to receiving the degree. [by] creating more functional math options for all of our students, not just a one-size-fits-all model… We talk about individualized education, but we only offer one option.

Currently, 63% of Currituck County High School students go on to post-secondary education after graduation, with the rate for JP Knapp Early College being somewhat higher at 68%.

Explaining what would be different about this new professional career degree track, Lutz said “the key academic shift would be from the four-year requirement of traditional math to technical math courses after completion of Math 1…Also information literacy as it relates to career and ed. tech.

“Being able to read manuals, being able to interpret technical language and having that option to explore that avenue would be much more beneficial for someone pursuing a career,” he added.

For his part, Lutz said the drive to create a new degree track needs to go the legislative route, and at the March 15 meeting, it was noted that State Senator Bob Steinburg had supported the concept. . Lutz said in recent days he also got a positive response from state representative Bobby Hanig.

The superintendent also noted that the resolution just passed by the Currituck School Board was sent to all school superintendents across the state late last week seeking support. He hopes the concept will pick up other backers.

State Superintendent of Public Instruction Catherine Truitt “also repeatedly mentioned the importance of allowing students to pursue careers after high school,” Lutz said. “Here at Currituck, part of our overall strategic plan is enlist, enlist, employ.”

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