Each year, one-third of all eighth-grade students attending New Castle County public schools apply for admission to a NCC VoTech high school. Students who are offered assignment begin in a ninth grade exploratory program, which exposes them to career options before they elect a specific course of study. They can choose to study one of 40 different careers in one of six clusters:
During their four years, students are exposed to nearly 1500 hours of specialized skills and technical training in their chosen career program in addition to the full academic course load required to earn a high school diploma.
An important component of the VoTech instruction is school-day, work-based training opportunities. As students become more proficient with their technical skills, they are given opportunities to work in local businesses to apply what they have learned in the classroom to the workplace. The school district has partnerships with hundreds of companies – both large and small – that provide training sites for student internship, job shadowing, mentoring, paid practicum, and co-operative employment experiences.
More than 4,600 students currently attend either Howard High School of Technology in Wilmington, Delcastle Technical High School in Newport, Hodgson VoTech High School in Glasgow, or St. Georges Technical High School in Middletown- the schools of the NCC VoTech School District.
Each school has adopted an “integrated curriculum” approach to planning lessons. Academic and technical teachers coordinate instruction. Each school also provides a full range of extra-curricular activities including athletics, career and technical student organizations, student government, honor society, drama, yearbook, and other national student organizations. Through their participation in these opportunities, students develop communication, leadership, and social skills.
Nearly 80% of NCC VoTech graduates report that they continue their education at technical and trade schools, colleges and universities, or enter apprenticeships. The skills students acquire through their dual academic/career curriculum can help them earn money while attending college. All four high schools offer a full range of academic courses preparing students to meet college entry requirements. More importantly, students can earn both high school and college credit simultaneously by taking tuition-free college courses during the school day. In addition, through the Tech Prep program, NCC VoTech students can earn credits and advanced placement in college and apprenticeship programs.
Graduates of NCC VoTech high schools have opportunities to receive a diploma as well as industry-recognized credentials and a career competency certificate. Students who successfully complete all academic and technical courses listed in their career program of study will be awarded an Exemplary (gold seal), Proficient (silver seal), or Limited (bronze seal) certificate upon graduation. Students use the certificates, which detail specific competency skills they have mastered, when interviewing for employment.
The NCC VoTech School District operates an extensive Adult Education Program for persons interested in retraining, advancement, continuing education, or completing their high school requirements.
Part-time and evening courses are offered for students in academic, apprenticeship training, certification, and trade extension programs. The school district also develops customized training courses for individual companies that wish to train their own specific employee groups. Training is offered at either company sites or VoTech school facilities.
For more information on Adult Programs, call 302-683-3643. For information on Apprenticeship Programs, call 302-683-3651.
The New Castle County Vocational Technical School District has offered high quality, comprehensive career and technical programs for nearly 50 years. The district’s history of success and progressive vision make it a leader in this new era of educational change.
Students from a broad range of backgrounds each year choose a VoTech education over their traditional high school. Our quality teachers have high standards and expectations for all students. Success is measured by school, student, and staff performance.
Our state-of-the-art facilities, use of technology in the classroom, and focused curriculum all create a learning environment that supports achievement. Our pace-setting high schools are, according to the New York Times, “…training centers capable of producing workers who can compete in a global, high tech economy.”
A guiding principle in all VoTech instruction is to teach students to be prepared to accept new ideas, learn new skills, and embrace new technology – lessons that will lead them well into the 21st century. A VoTech education translates into better and high paying jobs, and an educational and career pathway to the future. That’s the definition of Real Learning for Real Life!