Career and Technical Education
Career and Technical Education (CTE) are courses at the high school level that help students explore career opportunities and learn how academic subjects like math and science are used in various career fields. These classes feature skills standards in a subject matter content as well as leadership and employability training. CTE courses are available at all high schools, but do vary by school. If your student has a strong interest in any of the following career areas, please inquire about the availability of the related CTE courses at the school under consideration. CTE courses are organized under 16 nationally recognized "career clusters" which include: CTE programs that are available in just one or two schools. All are listed at CTE Programs.
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Construction Apprenticeship Program (CAPP)
The Construction Apprenticeship Preparation Program at TJHS prepares students for a variety of careers in the construction industry from technician to construction management. Partnering with the United Brotherhood of Carpenters, the Lathing & Acoustical Union, Home Depot, Washington Women in Trades, and local architectural and design firms, this program offers students the opportunity to combine acquisition of constructions skills with related academics. Students may earn free college credit in this program through the South King County Tech Prep Consortium, and may qualify for an apprenticeship position on completion of the program.
Automotive Technology Program (NATEF)
Decatur High School offers a two-year automotive repair program. A nationally recognized program, NATEF is associated with ASE, the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence. Reflecting the industry’s increasing sophistication, NATEF students learn a comprehensive set of skills, including a thorough knowledge of automotive systems, computer literacy, mechanical aptitude, communications skills, applied academics and entrepreneurship. Students gain college credit via an agreement with several area colleges, and those who earn the culminating certificate of achievement will have excellent employment and earning potential.
Offered at Decatur High School, horticulture classes can be taken as a laboratory science class, an occupational skills class or an elective. Students learn the basics agriculture, plant, and animal sciences. They participate in a co-curricular leadership organization call FFA and have the opportunity to earn free college credit through articulation with the Puget Sound Tech Prep Consortium.
Career and College Specialists
Project Lead the Way Pre-Engineering Program
Offered at Decatur and Federal Way High Schools, Project Lead the Way is a pre-engineering program that provides students interested in science and math the means to explore a lucrative potential career. At a time when technology is changing at light-speed, there is a critical shortage of engineers and engineering technologists entering the field. A nonprofit organization, Project Lead the Way® (PLTW) provides pre-engineering curriculum for high school and middle school students at 3,000 schools across the nation. Students earn either a math credit or an occupational educational credit.
ProStart Culinary Arts Program
Offered at Thomas Jefferson and Federal Way High Schools, ProStart prepares 11th and 12th-grade students for careers in the restaurant and food service industry. Students gain valuable restaurant and food service skills through academic and workplace experiences. Topics range from preparing and serving safe food, foodservice equipment and nutrition to working with people, business math, and controlling costs. Students will participate in the operation of a foodservice business and will complete a job shadow in a local food business. Passing the ProStart Final Exam at the end of the 2-year program results in achievement of an industry-recognized certificate.
Decatur and Todd Beamer High School’s sports medicine programs are modeled from a nationally-recognized program. It provides excellent preparation for students interested in the field of sports medicine and athletic training.
Offered at Federal Way, Todd Beamer, Thomas Jefferson and Decatur, the district’s Teacher Academy aims to encourage students to pursue careers in education. Students in 11th and 12th grades participate in a yearlong course that includes an internship at a local elementary school with a mentor teacher and development of a professional portfolio. Participants will learn about current issues in education, as well as how to plan lessons, deliver high-quality instruction and effectively manage a classroom. Students are encouraged to take the course for two years, with the second year largely based on gaining internship experience. An articulation agreement is in place for this course, which allows students to earn tech-prep college credit. Completion of the portfolio may help earn students admission into a university college of education.