April 19, 2005

Editors: Steve Czech, Deb Olsen

MnACTE/SNP Home Page: http://www.mnactesnp.org

President's Report

Greeting as spring is now fast approaching and our Conference is now history. This issue of the ECHO is going to be dedicated to the CTE Conferences held this winter. In December the National ACTE Conference was held in Las Vegas; again it was worthwhile. The MACTE/MnACTE Winter Conference that was held February 17 concluded with an awards banquet  recognizing their state winners.  MnACTE/SNP's LuAnn Tauer was recognized as MnACTE Teacher of the Year. The other conference was our Statewide Comprehensive Conference,"Continuing to Thrive in 2005," March 3rd & 4th. See the articles on each of these three conferences.

Those who renew in March can start the renewal process anytime now; you can print off a membership form from our website and send it in. You will notice that the dues structure and amounts have changed this year to reflect the change with MnACTE; all the Division's membership dues were increased by $10; then you are members of MnACTE as well as the Division. This reflects a $30 decrease in overall dues. I encourage those who are members to renew, as well as those who have not joined, to consider joining. MnACTE, is the umbrella organization; their efforts have been crucial to the overall CTE areas and the impact on our future. Efforts on their part, as well as others, was a factor in helping to get the levy permanent along with working on funding for tech tutors. The larger the membership, the bigger the impact they can have when representing us to the legislators regarding CTE issues. Also consider joining ACTE as they are about the only group representing CTE interests on national legislation such as the Perkins Reauthorization. Check out their website, http://www.acteonline.org. You play a very important role in the education and success of students with special needs that we all work with, so please be proactive in promoting not only our area but also all of CTE. Keep your membership current, consider joining ACTE, and encourage others to join. You can also consider serving on the board; see the article on the pages ahead.

Beginning in March, the Board will be starting to seek nominations for next year's board members. There will be at least two openings, and in most cases four, for each of the sections represented on the board. For officers, all of the positions, as well as, president-elect will be open. The section positions are one-year terms and the officer positions are two-year terms; you need to be a member in good standing to serve in either. The board members select the ad hoc members to serve on the board. If you are interested in being nominated, or have questions regarding serving on the board, contact Steve Czech at Steve.Czech@anoka.k12.mn.us. The present board and positions are listed on the home page of the website. The term begins with the Annual Membership Meeting in the fall. Please consider being nominated to serve on the board.

Enjoy reading about the conferences, looking at the pictures, and have a good spring. The next issue will be coming out shortly; watch for it.

Submitted by:
Robert W. Lindgren
Work Experience Coordinator
Area High School
401 Huntsinger Avenue
Park Rapids, MN 56470
Office: 218-237-6479
Fax: 218-237-6401


"Continuing to Thrive in 2005" Gets Popular Response

Over 130 people attended the MnACTE/SNP "Continuing to Thrive in 2005" Comprehensive Statewide Conference held on March 3rd and 4th at the Earle Brown Heritage Center in Brooklyn Center. The Opening Keynote Speaker was Candace Richards who's presentation demonstrated how "Attitudes Are Contagious." She reminded all of us how looking through "rose colored" glasses at life's challenges can improve our attitude and quality of life.

A variety of breakout sessions were also featured on both Thursday and Friday. Themes focused on legislation, student run businesses and competitions, mental health, teaming, funding sources, workplace safety, Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, Career Camps and teaming. The sessions got very good reviews and comments.

Thursday's Awards Luncheon was very touching and inspired many. Several well deserved awards were given out to students, business and agency leaders and a teacher. The luncheon also featured Cliff Vrieze, 2004 ACTE Teacher of the Year, who spoke to the group on Career and Technical Education Opportunities for Students. Cliff was very motivating and got a great response.

Friday's session closed with keynote speakers Sister Michelle Meyers and Sister Kay O'Neil. Their topic was "Be a Blessing: What have I done for Someone today?" Their message conveyed how being a blessing to one another connects us more deeply to life. When we strengthen others, we are strengthened ourselves. The Sisters spoke at the conference two years ago and were asked back by popular demand. The overall feedback on the conference was positive and many indicated that it was the best conference they'd attended!!

Submitted by:
Lu Ann Tauer
Richfield Schools

Lu Ann Tauer Receives Minnesota's Outstanding Teacher of the Year Award

Lu Ann Tauer, Richfield School District's Transition Plus Work Experience Coordinator and MnACTE/SNP President Elect, was presented with the MnACTE/MACTA Outstanding Teacher of the Year Award at the organizations' annual awards banquet held at the Radisson-City Center February 17th. Ginny Karbowski, MnACTE Awards Chair, presented Lu Ann with an engraved plaque and commended her for her hard work and commitment throughout the years. CONGRATULATIONS, Lu Ann!

Submitted by:
Lezlie Ingvalson
Richfield Schools

2004 ACTE Convention

Las Vegas! What a location for the 2004 National ACTE Convention this past December. There were a couple of changes made this year, and about 4,200 people were in attendance. The Early-bird Registration was a big success; hopefully it will be continued. Also, with Sunday being dropped, more peopled stayed for the entire conference; in the past many didn't attend Sunday in order to catch planes. LuAnn Tauer and myself were the only MnACTE/SNP board members attending this year; read her article, too.

As in past years, I find that attending the conference is very worthwhile, and I always find it hard to choose which sessions I need to attend. Over the years I am attending more of the general and ACTE sessions along with some of the Special Needs Division sessions. I went out a day early to be Region III's representative on the ACTE's By-laws Standing Committee; this turned out to be a very interesting year with the reorganization of ACTE, and thus By-law changes voted on during the Assembly of Delegates on Saturday. Along with attending that committee's meeting on Wednesday, I also attended the Town Hall Meeting on reorganization Friday afternoon, Region III Business Meeting, and then was one of the delegates at the AOD for voting on the changes. See article on AOD Report. Friday, until the Town Hall Meeting, I was attending Special Needs Sessions and its Business Meeting and Awards Presentations; these were held in conjunction with NAVESNP. ACTE's Keri Haars, who presented on Legislative Advocacy, put on one of the sessions I attended; I presented some of her information during the session I facilitated at our conference in March. Friday evening was Minnesota's "Get Together;" we met at the Hofbrauhaus and had an excellent meal and networking with other CTE people from the state. Approximately 25 people attended.

Each day started out with an Opening Session with excellent keynote speakers. Thursday we heard Bob Kriegel tell us about change and the need to think outside the box. To be successful today we cannot play by the old rules, we learn differently today than yesterday, challenge the status quo, anticipate change, realize the change is not easy and have fun. He has copyrighted the term "Change-Ready" which means that companies are always rethinking the rules of the game, redefining their role, and they're looking to reinvent the game. He challenged us to be excited, motivated, creative, innovative, and above all love what we do. Amanda Gore spoke on Friday about the need to connect with our students and others with our hearts, not just our heads; this will make us more compassionate and better leaders. She went on to talk about ways we can look after ourselves, and the importance that laughter plays in good health and feeling better. On Saturday we listened to the business futurist, Roger Herman, who provided insights on what the future holds in the workplace and the challenges CTE will face in meeting those demands. We need to think of inspiration as part of our jobs, collaborate with employers, and set and enforce high standards for those we teach. He also has a weekly on-line newsletter, The Herman Group, which looks at future trends.

Again, I will say if it's at all possible to attend the ACTE National Convention, you should do so. Next year it is in New Orleans, December 8-10, 2005.

Submitted by:
Robert Lindgren
Park Rapids Area Schools

2004 ACTE Bylaw Changes from Assembly of Delegates

There were many amendments proposed to the ACTE Bylaws for consideration by the Assembly of Delegates in Las Vegas last Saturday. Most of the changes were related to the proposed ACTE reorganization that has been under discussion for the past several years. However, as is often the case when significant changes are proposed, there was more skepticism than support. As such, the Arizona state association forwarded a successful proposal that will take all of the proposed bylaw amendments relating to the reorganization and referring them to a 17-member committee.  This committee has been instructed to bring modifications back for discussion to the Assembly of Delegates in New Orleans in 2005.  The eventual adoption is slated for the Assembly of Delegates in Atlanta in 2006. The 17-member committee is to include one member of the ACTE Board, the chair of the Reorganization Task Force (Gene Callahan from Oklahoma), and three members from each of ACTE's five Regions selected by the Regional Vice Presidents (Bryan Albrecht of Wisconsin currently serves as Vice President for Region III).

Bylaw amendments that were adopted by the Assembly of Delegates:

  • Changes to the purposes of ACTE were adopted as printed, with the addition of language to reinsert "professional development" with knowledge connectivity as a core purpose of the organization.
  • Changes to the language regarding the removal of Board members to be consistent with applicable law rather than specified by a process in the bylaws. ACTE is incorporated in Indiana and must follow the laws of that state. It is my understanding that the procedures specified in the ACTE bylaws were not consistent with Indiana law.
  • An amendment specifying notification requirements for its annual meeting as 45 days in either mail or electronic means.
  • Amendments adjusting the process for amending the ACTE Bylaws, including a process for electronic amendments to the bylaws by voting delegates from the previous Annual Meeting (Assembly of Delegates).

Bylaw amendments that were considered but not adopted by the Assembly of Delegates:

  • Changes to the method of election. The proposal would have renamed the vice presidents as "directors" and shifted responsibilities for carrying out the election from the executive committee to the full board of directors. The Bylaws committee withdrew this proposal pending clarification on the ACTE reorganization.

Please watch the ACTE website for a complete discussion of the bylaws action at the Assembly of Delegates.

Submitted by:
Robert Lindgren
Park Rapids Area Schools

MACTA/MnACTE Winter Conference

The Minnesota Association of Career and Technical Administrators and The Minnesota Association of Career and Technical Education teamed together to put on a great conference. It made sense to have administrators and teachers collaborating together on current topics and issues. There was also terrific representation from the Department of Education.

In the Opening Session, Luke Weisberg, from the Governor's Workforce Council, gave a view of the future of CTE. His overview was general, and he discussed the governor's plan to eliminate MYP funding.

Dan Smith gave updates on CTE and Work-Based Learning and defined Transition Disabled Funding in an understandable way. He emphasized the importance of whether or not a student is in an "employment relationship" which exists if the employer gets a direct benefit from the "employee." A power point explanation of all the updates can be obtained from MDE. It is called CTE-Work-Based Learning Update.

Another session I went to was presented by LaChelle Williams from Junior Achievement (JA). This session was wonderful, and I think we should all consider what JA offers for our students with disabilities. There are many activities a teacher/coordinator could get from JA. Their resources range from speakers to various products that can be produced. Give LaChelle a call at 651-255-0036. She is located in Maplewood.

Ginny Karbowski gave a wonderful presentation on a report called: "Breaking Ranks II, a Report in High School Reviewal." Some highlights of her presentation included: establishing a site council to promote student learning, developing a school that regards itself as a community and collaborative approaches to developing goals. Teachers would provide leadership for this reform. Each staff person would develop and use a personal learning plan for their professional development. Another important aspect of this report was education, performance and evaluation of educators. Those that are interested should contact Ginny at Anoka-Hennepin Schools for further information.

Jim Stone, from U of M, gave an interesting, and joke filled session on "Lies, Dammed Lies, and Statistics." He is a super speaker and talked a lot about the workforce of the future.

Submitted by:
Dean Shawbold
White Bear Lake Schools


2005 MnACTE/SNP Student Grant Awards: The nomination form for the student grant award is now available and can be accessed at the following link: 2005.student.grant You can also find the form linked to the MnACTE/SNP home page. The due date is 5/6/05.

Reminder: If your address or email address changes, please contact Bob Lindgren at rlindgren@parkrapids.k12.mn.us. It is important to keep current email addresses as our organization has chosen an electronic format for most communication.

MnACTE/SNP May 2005 Board Meeting/Tour:
May 12, 2005 at Anoka Technical College (ATC) and Anoka-Hennepin District #11's STEP (Secondary Technical Education Program).
Lunch: 12:00 pm at ATC's cafeteria,
Board Meeting: 12:30-1:30 ATC room to be determined
STEP Tour: 1:30-2:30

MnACTE Board Meetings: June 28, 2005, Chanhassen and August (day to be determined) 2005, Park Rapids

ACTE Region III Leadership Conference: July 10-12, 2005, Indianapolis, IN.

MnACTE/SNP Annual Membership Board Meeting:
When: October 13, 2005
Time: 12:30 pm
Where: Hennepin Technical College Room H195, Brooklyn Park

ACTE National Convention: December 8-10, 2005, New Orleans, LA

2005 MnACTE/SNP Awards

The contributions and successes of six individuals were celebrated at the MNACTE/SNP conference awards appreciation and recognition luncheon at Earle Brown Center on Thursday, March 3, 2005.

Amy Johnson receives Outstanding Career and Technical Special Needs Students of the Year Award from Tom Carlson.

Amy Johnson, Transition Plus, Anoka Hennepin District 11, is an honor student at Anoka Ramsey Community College and is employed part time at Johansen Bus Service and Subway. Amy is working toward her Emergency Medical Technician certification and will graduate with an Associate of Arts Degree this spring. Amy is also a member of Phi Theta Kappa, an honors organization. Amy was diagnosed EBD in elementary school and with educational support and her resilience, Amy is achieving her goals. Amy will receive a scholarship from MnACTE/SNP in the spring. Amy was introduced by Tom Carlson, Work Coordinator, Transition Plus, Anoka Hennepin District 11.

Vathida Phouthasack receives Outstanding Career and Technical Special Needs Students of the Year Award from Barb JoliCoeur.

Vathida Phouthasack, Intermediate District 287 VECTOR North Transition Program is completing the 22 credit Medical Transcriptionist Advanced Technical Certificate from Hennepin Technical College and will earn her certificate in a year. She is employed by the Maple Grove Police Department transcribing arrest reports from police officers using the JAWS software program. Vathida has Retinitis Pigmentosa and gradually lost her vision and learned to read Braille when she was 16. Vathida, with the support of her family, VECTOR, and other specialized professionals and with her determination, is achieving her goals. Vathida will receive a scholarship from MnACTE/SNP in the spring. Vathida was introduced by Barb Jolicoeur, Program Facilitator, VECTOR.

Jeanna Knealing accepts Mike Muller's award for Outstanding Career and Technical Education Special Needs Direct Service Provider of the Year.

Mike Muller, Sr. is the owner of the Muller Family Theaters. Mike has been in the movie business since he was a young child. Mike has encouraged his management team to think outside the box when seeking qualified employees. He has always supported the belief that all people have the right to develop new skills, make choices and enjoy a variety of work experiences. Currently the Mullers employ over 50 individuals with special needs through various local schools and adult placement programs in his Delano, Waconia, East Bethel, Lakeville, Willow Creek and Monticello theaters. Mike's award was accepted by Jeanna Knealing, General Manager, Muller East Bethel Theater.


Shari Wilson receives the Outstanding Career and Technical Education Special Needs Direct Service Provider of the Year Award from Barbara Mosher-Glansmon.

Shari Wilson, General Manager, Muller White Bear Township Theater, works with Northeast Metro District 916. Students employed by White Bear Township Theater are trained to cashier, run concessions, handle equipment, clean, mow, and trim hedges. All employees receive sensitivity training and must pass the employment training system. All employees must be PEQ (polite, efficient and quick). Shari is proud of the student success she has witnessed as well as the 98% of students who go on to be employed elsewhere after their White Bear Township training. Shari was introduced by Barbara Mosher-Glansman, Work Experience Coordinator, NE Metro Intermediate District 916.

Randy Back receives the Outstanding Career and Technical Education Special Needs Indirect Service Provider of the Year Award from Mick Seme.

Randy Back is a Career Counselor at the NE Minnesota Office of Job Training. Randy's territory includes Cook, Lake and St. Louis counties. Randy is a valuable asset to high school work programs because he always has a place in his heart for students with special needs. When there is a need to match the perfect job to a person with special needs, and if there are funds available, Randy will come through. An aspect of Randy's career he finds important and rewarding is working with individuals and their careers after they leave high school. Randy was introduced by Mick Seme, Work Experience Coordinator, Cloquet.

Rob Graham receives the Outstanding Career and Technical Education Special Needs Teacher of the Year Award from Pat Larson and LuAnn Tauer.

Rob Graham, Secondary Culinary Arts Teacher for District 287, Eden Prairie Campus, teaches three sections of secondary students each day and approximately 35 percent of those students have special needs. Rob's class size averages over 20 students per class, yet he manages to accommodate the individual learning styles and abilities of his students. "Chef Rob" as his students refer to him, believes that a traditional four year college is not appropriate for all students. "Here they can apply themselves through hands on learning and actually come away from the program having learned organizational skills, time and people management skills and also learn how to cook!" Rob was introduced by Pat Larson and Luann Tauer, WEH Coordinators, Richfield High School.

Submitted by:
Barb Weldon
Anoka-Hennepin District #11

Bemidji State University CTE Website

I am pleased to announce a new website for teachers and administrators who are involved with licensing of CTE teachers at the secondary and post-secondary levels in Minnesota. This new website includes information on licensing and degree requirements, Teacher Education Series (TES) courses, Work-Base Learning (WBL) courses, upcoming course schedules, registration information, and more! The website address is www.bemidjistate.edu/cte. There are also links to other useful related sites.

Please check it out to see how it will provide important and timely information; pass it on to a friend or colleague, too! We are anticipating adding more features to the website soon, including tips on teaching, teaching resources and a bulletin board to post announcements.

We would appreciate receiving feedback or suggestions on the new website. Please send comments to me at jmccracken@bemidjistate.edu .


Dr. Jim McCracken, Director Center for Career & Technical Education