Pennsylvania Uses SLDS to Generate Insights on CTE Programs and Outcomes

The Perkins Innovation and Modernization Grant Program’s purpose is to identify, support, and evaluate evidence-based and innovative strategies and activities to improve and modernize Career and Technical Education (CTE). The program ensures workforce skills taught in CTE programs funded under the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act of 2006, as amended by the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act (Perkins V) align with labor market needs . The Perkins Act increased funds for the first time in about 30 years, boasting a $75 million increase in 2018 and another $70 million increase in 2019.

Why is Perkins V such an important piece of legislation? It proves that the shift to CTE and non-traditional pathways are showing positive effects on student success and the health of the economy. When looking at the student population that has gone to a traditional college or university versus a non-traditional student who might have chosen an alternative path, those concentrating in CTE programs have a greater chance of graduating compared to the average national freshman graduation rate. High school students who incorporate CTE courses are more engaged, perform better, and graduate at higher rates. College students and adults who pursue CTE as a post-secondary option, allows them the opportunity to prepare for in-demand careers in the real world. CTE also boosts the economy and businesses because it addresses the needs of high-growth industries and helps close the skills gap .

As a best practice, states should integrate their CTE data into their SLDS. There are many benefits to doing this, such as supporting federal reporting requirements and analyzing policies and programs. Several eScholar customers already incorporate their CTE data into their SLDS, one of which is the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE).

PDE is exemplary agency that leverages its SLDS to collect, integrate, and report on its CTE data. With eScholar Complete Data Warehouse powering the Pennsylvania Information Management System (PIMS) and eScholar Uniq-ID powering their statewide unique identifier, PASecureID, PDE benefits from an integrated and clean set of data that can provide accurate counts, measures, and CTE analysis. For example, PDE found that that 99% of Pennsylvania CTE students who successfully completed at least 50% of their CTE program graduated from high school. PDE also benefits from having quality CTE data available for all types of reporting, from public-facing dashboards to federal reporting.

Learn more about how PDE is utilizing eScholar Solutions to collect and integrate CTE data by downloading our case study below.

  1. (n.d.). Retrieved from
  2. About CTE. (n.d.). Retrieved from



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