New CTE classes to be added to LISD high schools, career centers


Photo by Sarosh Ismail

Sign outside of the Technology, Exploration and Career Center East (TECCE) building.

New Career and Technical Education (CTE) Innovative Courses will be added to high schools and to the Technology, Exploration and Career Center (TECC) West campus this spring. These courses, subject to interest and enrollment, will be available for student registration for the 2021-22 school year. Course registration will start Feb. 12.  

“Every year, the Texas Education Agency releases a list of innovative courses that are available for school districts to use,” Executive Director of Career and Technical Education Jason Cooper said. “Every year, our CTE department takes a look at the list [to see] if it includes anything we would like to add or replace any of our current courses with, in order to better align with our goals for LISD CTE.”

The courses that will be available at all high school campuses are Applied Nutrition and Dietetics, Counseling and Mental Health, Entrepreneurship 2, Fundamentals of Real Estate, Human Resources Management and Marketing. The Robotics Program at TECC is being added to Flower Mound, Hebron, Lewisville and Marcus. The courses that will be available at the TECC-West campus are Intro to Event and Meeting Planning, Foundations of Restaurant Management and Agriculture Leadership, Research and Communication.

“Some of the courses are helping us better build our initiatives,” Cooper said. “For example, Entrepreneurship 2 helps continue our Entrepreneurship pathway that can be offered at all high school campuses but also helps build out our INCubator programs at [Lewisville High School] and will be added to [The Colony High School] in August. As we evaluate all of our course offerings every year, some of these courses better align with the direction of technology, the statewide and national workforce data and trends, as well as what we are trying to accomplish locally.”

One of the courses, Counseling and Mental Health, was presented to Cooper by first year CTE teacher at Marcus High School, Anna Janczak. Cooper said the more he looked at it, the more he found the course was a perfect fit for the program. Janczak said she believes during the COVID-19 pandemic is the perfect time to teach young adults healthy mental health strategies and coping skills. 

“I am extremely passionate about mental health due to a college friend who struggled and lacked knowledge of resources available to her,” Janczak said. “The idea of this class was extremely important to me because I feel that there is a lack of education towards counseling and mental health in public schools. Many of us are aware of different mental health issues, but unaware of the resources we have around us to help us through hard times. I want to bring awareness of resources to young adults for them to help themselves and/or others.”

Before a class is listed in the Course Selection Book, it must be approved by the School Board. LISD school board member Jenny Proznik proposed these new courses to the board at the Jan. 11 school board meeting. The proposal to add the courses was unanimously approved. 

“The Board has always asked for administration to look into expansion of programs that could benefit students and provide opportunities,” Proznik said. “One of the prerequisites is the ability to earn a certificate or certification in that field.”