Parents and Students

Career and Technical Education FAQ

Who is a CTE Student?

  • A high school student who is engaged in academic preparation leading to a Regent’s Diploma.
  • A high school student enrolled in an approved program of study, connected to a career pathway and meeting business and industry standards.
  • A high school student who graduates with advanced standing on the Regent's Diploma in the form of a Technical Endorsement. List of Programs Eligible for Technical Endorsement.
  • A high school student who successfully completes approved program of study and completes an industry recognized performance-based assessment.
  • A high school student who participates in work-based learning experiences, such as internships, mentorships, job shadowing and other industry-based experiences.
  • A high school student who takes part in youth leadership organizations.

How does CTE prepare students for life after high school?

Students who graduate from CTE schools have multiple options. They may choose to continue their education at colleges and universities, go directly into the workforce, select technical training programs, apprenticeships, or schools that specialize in their chosen field of interest, or some combination of all of the above. 

High quality career and technical education programs directly engage students to meet Regents graduation standards through a contextualized program of study that links rigorous academic content with industry requirements and workforce experience.

How does a student find a CTE school that fits his or her interests?

Students and their parents can access CTE information from various sources. Begin by speaking with your child’s guidance counselor at his/her school and consult the Directory of Public High Schools

Why would a student wish to enroll in a CTE school?

Students enroll in CTE schools because they wish to learn “hands-on” career skills while earning a Regent's Diploma in order to prepare for college or other higher education studies. In addition to school laboratory settings, students have the opportunity to take part in internships, mentorships, job shadowing, and other industry-based, real-life experiences.

What are the graduation requirements for a CTE student?

School districts and BOCES must require students who pursue a career and technical education program to:

  • Pass five required Regents examinations or alternatives approved by the State Assessment Panel;
  • Complete a minimum of 22 units of credit;
  • Complete a minimum of 14.5 units of credit in academic core  requirements;  and
  • Complete a maximum of one unit of credit in English, mathematics, science, economics, and government through either a full integrated* program with documentation of academic core requirements, specialized career and technical education courses, or a combination of the two approaches (see Modified Graduation Requirements for CTE Chart).

*What are Career and Technical Education integrated courses?

Integrated CTE courses were introduced when the Regents approved the Career and Technical Education Policy of 2001. They are defined in Commissioner’s Regulations as:

"An integrated career and technical education course shall mean a course that combines career and technical education and academic commencement level learning standards and may be jointly developed by an academic subject teacher and/or a career and technical education teacher. Successful completion of one unit of study in an integrated career and technical education course may be awarded only one unit of credit but may be used to meet the distribution requirements in more than one subject. For students who have not successfully completed the Regents examination(s) in the academic subject areas, the course(s) must be taught by a teacher certified in that subject." [C.R.R.100.5(d)(6)(I)(a)]
Additional Information about CTE Integrated Courses

  • CTE integrated courses may only be used as a core academic subject credit by students enrolled in an approved CTE program.
  • CTE integrated courses apply only to the four core academic subjects and do not apply to other graduation requirements such as art/music, health, etc.
  • CTE integrated courses must be co-developed by a CTE subject teacher and an academic teacher of the core academic area integrated into the course.
  • Co-teaching a CTE integrated course by a CTE teacher and core academic teacher is encouraged and adds to the strength of the instructional delivery.
  • Students who have not yet passed the related core academic Regents examination may be enrolled in a CTE integrated course if the student is also concurrently enrolled in a core academic course in preparation for the Regents examination that is taught by a teacher certified in the core academic subject.
  • A CTE integrated course may be applied to a maximum of one unit of core academic credit in each of the four core academic areas and, at the same time, be used to meet a CTE distribution (CTE sequence/program) requirement in an approved CTE program.
  • In completing the process leading to CTE program approval, school districts/BOCES must include the New York State Career Development and Occupational Studies (CDOS) Learning Standards and the learning standards for the core academic areas (at the “commencement level”) in the CTE integrated course within the required curriculum crosswalk.

Can a student use additional CTE courses for academic credit?

Students pursuing an approved program in career and technical education have the option of using specified CTE courses to meet certain diploma requirements in general education.

Sample General Education Requirement and Appropriate CTE Alternative Courses

Fourth unit of English Language Arts
e.g. Business Communications

Social Studies (one-half unit in Participation in Government)
e.g. Student Leadership Organization Activities

e.g. Health Occupations Core

e.g. Design and Drawing for Production (DDP)

e.g. Clothing and Textile Core

e.g. Housing and Environment Core

Can you earn a Regents Diploma with Advanced designation and complete a CTE program of study?

To earn a Regents diploma with an advanced designation a student must complete an additional two units in a language other than English (a total of three units) and must pass the Regents comprehensive examination in that language. Students completing a five-unit sequence in CTE or the arts (visual arts, music, dance, and theatre) are not required to complete the additional two units of the language other than English to receive advanced designation. However, they must meet the requirements for the total number of units of credit.

A Regents diploma with advanced designation is awarded to students who meet additional requirements:

  • one additional Regents examination in mathematics, for a total of two, as determined by the Commissioner or approved alternatives;
  • one additional Regents examination in science, for a total of two, with at least one in life science and at least one in physical science;
  • two additional units in language other than English, for a total of three units, and the Regents comprehensive assessment in that language; and
  • students completing a five unit sequence in CTE or a five unit sequence in the arts are not required to complete the additional two units of the language other than English. They must still meet the requirements for the total number of units of credit.


What is Career and Financial Management?

A Career and Financial Management course is required as part of every career and technical education (CTE) program including five-unit CTE programs used as a substitution for the additional two units of foreign language needed for a Regents diploma with advanced designation. The Career and Financial Management content can be met either as a discrete course or integrated into other courses in a CTE sequence.

Part-A of the Career and Financial Management requirement was developed by teachers and consultants to replace the current required modules "Working Citizen/Personal Resource Management" in the Introduction to Occupations course. The purpose of the new one-half unit course is to provide students with the opportunity to learn about the features of our economy, explore a variety of careers, learn the skills and competencies needed for success in the workplace and to begin to become financially literate. Part-B of the Career and Financial Management requirement can be met by a student taking one-half unit of any career and technical education curriculum that either introduces students to a cluster of occupations or develops skills appropriate for a cluster of occupations.