Amid the growing concerns for education during the pandemic, Career Tech High Academy Charter School aims to provide a new avenue for students wanting to learn trade skills. 

With a goal to prepare students for gainful employment, enroll in post-high school training in certain areas or attend college, Career Tech offers academic courses that emphasize career technical education, or CTE, concepts and skills. These range from health science, hospitality and STEM, to information technology, manufacturing and construction.

"As a charter school, any student on Guam can enroll at Career Tech and can be enrolled on a first-come, first-served basis," said Principal Juan Flores. "If we run out of available slots, students will be put on a waiting list and can be enrolled when an opening comes up. If approved by the Legislature, we hope to enroll 125 students in grades 9-12."

According to Flores, although a relatively small school, Career Tech's size allows teachers and students to have a better one-to-one relationship.

"The size of the school makes it possible for all of us to address challenges students may have and to celebrate their successes," he said. 

"Students get support to achieve proficiency, build their confidence in doing great academic work, and make friends. School is not as they had it in other schools. Students are learning more, as more is expected of them. Career Tech is a special place and will continue to be a learning center for all kinds of students who have a common goal to succeed." 

Career and technology education can help give children skills outside of the traditional learning experience that can help them succeed in the real world: technical skills; academic skills; and employability skills. In addition, career and technical education helps students see how what they're learning applies to the needs of employers, according to Skills USA, a nonprofit national education association that helps middle, high school and college students prepare for careers in trade, technical and skilled service occupations.

According to Career Tech's website, students will be prepared for employment or advanced training in a chosen career cluster after graduation.

Fields available for study at Career Tech are:  

• Information technology (preparation for CompTIA certifications.)

• Renewable energy certification - Solar PV 

• Certified nursing assistant 

• Naval science (OUPV 6 pack boat captain's license).

• Sustainable agriculture

• Business/accounting 

The school's website also states:

• Approximately 2,530 students graduate from Guam's public and private high schools every year. In School Year 2016-2017, 571 graduates enrolled at the University of Guam, and 523 enrolled at Guam Community College.

• Another 500 went to college off-island or simply moved away from Guam. The remaining 936 graduates enter Guam's job market with little to no technical skills or are unemployed.

• High school students involved in CTE have a 93% graduation rate, compared to the average national freshman graduation rate of 80%.

• The more students participate in CTE organizations, the higher their academic motivation, academic engagement, grades, career self-efficacy, college aspirations and employability skills.

Students interested in enrolling at Career Tech can do so online at https://careertechguam.org/register.

For other questions or concerns, Career Tech can be reached by phone at 671-797-TECH (8324) or 671-565-TECH (8324).

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