Career and Technical Education

New Course and Certification Opportunities

Many don’t like to see stores stocking back-to-school supplies as early as mid-July.

I personally love it! As a parent and educator, I believe it’s a fresh start for students and teachers. Here at Florida Virtual School, we have students who take classes year round in our Flex program, but we also have students who follow a more traditional calendar with our Full Time program. Full Time students will be returning to school this month, and I want to share some of the exciting things happening this school year.

I’m particularly thrilled for FLVS Full Time students to come back this fall. If you’re attending FLVS Full Time this year, find resources to help you start the year off here! Continue reading


Military Crossroads with Career and Technical Education (CTE)

Michael Francis

Michael Francis, U.S. Army Sergeant

From 2000 to 2004, I was an active duty Soldier in the United States Army and have been in the Florida Army National Guard since 2005.

There are many parts of my military career that stand out in my memory. Basic training, my drill sergeant during the hot summer at Fort Jackson, being in my promotion board during the September 11 attacks, being deployed during multiple state emergencies, and so much more. Most recently, and regardless of political platform, I was honored to play a role in our democracy by providing security support for the 2017 Presidential Inauguration in D.C.

However, these memories and events are not what changed me the most.

Instead, it is the military’s connection with CTE that has been the most valuable. That connection positively affected my personal life, my educational pursuits, and my civilian career.

Although military life is not for everyone, the skills and knowledge that are integrated within CTE are for everyone, whether an Army future is in the cards or not.

Continue reading


Aliens and Explosions

This post was written by FLVS student Sarah Weyand about her award-winning research in astrophysics.

Studying ExoplanetsMy science fair journey began about a year ago.

I was approached by a Harvard graduate who wanted to mentor a high school senior in an astrophysics and computer science research project.

I knew nothing about astronomy and I didn’t know a single programming language, but I love space and I plan to major in computer science in college. Naturally, I said yes. This project has taken me to the Science Talent Search, the Indian River Regional Science and Engineering Fair, and, now, the State Science Fair.

My project is titled Aliens and Explosions: How Supernovae Affect the Habitable Zones of Exoplanets.

The purpose of the project is to calculate the percentage of exoplanets, a planet that does not orbit our Sun, that would no longer be in the habitable zone of their host star due to a supernova, the explosive death of a massive star. Continue reading


How Career & Technical Education Changed My Life

CTE_Blog_CoverIn honor of Career and Technical Education (CTE) Month, I would like to reflect on the influence CTE has had on my life – even though I didn’t realize it until a decade later.

As a teenager, I wasn’t a big fan of school. Classes, homework, and way too much science! I couldn’t stand it.

However, every time I left my rural campus to assist nurses at the local hospital, I felt the thrill of escape and the fun of doing something new. So, for all the wrong reasons, I enrolled in my high school’s nursing program and was quickly on my way to plenty of time not in school. The perfect plan!

It didn’t take long for me to learn my first CTE lesson: there is much more to a nursing program than wearing scrubs and getting out of class. I’d signed up for a daily, three-hour block of anatomy and physiology, as well as an introduction to nursing skills. Yep, my brilliant plan to escape school somehow locked me into three hours of science a day. Continue reading


The Impact of Professional Development in CTE

ACTE Career Tech Conference 2016I recently attended the Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE) conference, and I can tell you that it did not disappoint!

Having only been to the FLVS In-Service Training Days, I was not entirely sure what to expect. After sitting through the first general session, I knew what I was going to get: several days of highly-informative exhibits and sessions presented by enthusiastic Career and Technical Education (CTE) instructors.

The conference had plenty of specialized vendor exhibits and interesting conference speakers. And the sessions – there were so many from which to choose!

I had my pick of a number of high-interest topics dealing with general CTE classroom strategies, resources that were specific to computer and tech courses, and sessions on policies affecting the future of CTE education. It was quite overwhelming – it took me a while to sort through all the options to find the perfect ones to attend. Continue reading


Being Competitive in Tomorrow’s Workforce

Being Competitive in Tomorrow’s WorkforceThe year was 1989.

We saw the birth of the World Wide Web, the fall of the Berlin Wall, the television debut of The Simpsons, and my epic walk onto the stage to receive my high school diploma.

As I proceeded to college, I used the skills that I had learned in high school: doing research using a card catalog, typing reports using an electric typewriter, and doing accounting class projects that required a calculator, a pencil, and a lot of erasers.

If I were to list these skills on my resume today, I would be considered an unqualified candidate.

You may wonder how a college student with outdated skills became an online technology teacher.

It’s simple, really. By updating my skill sets and being able to evolve with new advancements in technology, I honed the skills to which I am referring. Those skills are soft, hard, and transferable. Continue reading


Digital Information Technology

Digital Information TechnologyHave you ever thought about what kind of technology skills you will need to be successful?

Tech skills are essential – not only in school, but in almost any career field you can think of. Sure, you can probably use a computer, surf the web, type up your report, and operate a ton of apps, but do you really have the skills you need for success?

Digital Information Technology will be releasing very soon and provides students with hundreds of fundamental skills in technology, ranging from web page design to using spreadsheets as a tool to display and calculate data. Continue reading


FLVS Career and Technical Education Course Tour

FLVS Career and TechComputer Science Education Week is a great time to think about getting certified with FLVS!

But what exactly does getting a technical certification mean?

With more than 20 Career and Technical Education (CTE) courses to choose from at FLVS, you can earn certifications from companies like Microsoft, Adobe, and Cisco. A certification shows employers that you have the most current skills and that you meet performance standards within the tech industry—an industry that continues to grow every year.

Interested in Computer Programming, Networking, or Digital Media and Design? With CTE courses at FLVS, you may be able to get a jump start on college credit and earn a weighted credit to boost your GPA. Continue reading


Join an Hour of Code!

Hour of Code TutorialsComputers are everywhere, but fewer schools teach computer science than 10 years ago.

The good news is, we’re on our way to change this. If you’ve heard about the Hour of Code before, you might know it made history. More than 100 million students have tried an Hour of Code with fun online games and tutorials featuring Star Wars, Minecraft, and Frozen.

This year, students of the FLVS STEM Club will give presentations about creating websites and more. Last year, every Apple Store in the world hosted an Hour of Code and even President Obama wrote his first line of code as part of the campaign.

Over 100 partners have joined together to support this movement.  Continue reading


Foundations of Web Design

Web Foundations
Are you interested in learning how to create a website?

In this honors course, students play the role of an intern at a local business and complete projects using programs such as Adobe CS6 Dreamweaver and Photoshop. Students also learn about HTML code and good design principles.

This course is part of a series that can lead to industry certification in Adobe CS6 Dreamweaver. In addition to taking Introduction to Information Technology as a pre-requisite, students can also take User Interface Design after completing Foundations of Web Design to work towards the certification. Continue reading