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Career and Technical Education Standards and Academic Alignment


Colorado Career and Technical Education (CTE) provides quality educational programs emphasizing core academic content, postsecondary & workforce readiness (PWR) competencies, technical skills, and seamless transition to further education or employment.

CTE ensures a thriving Colorado economy by providing relevant and rigorous education that is connected, responsive and real.


Signed into law in May 2008, Senate Bill 08-212, also known as “Colorado’s Achievement Plan for Kids” or CAP4K, was a landmark education reform initiative that created for the first time in Colorado a truly aligned preschool to postsecondary educational system.

In addition to requiring a review process of the academic standards, Senate Bill 08-212 also called for the State Board of Education to "take into account any Career & Technical Education standards adopted by the State Board for Community Colleges and Occupational Education, created in Section 23-60-104, C.R.S., and, to the extent practicable, shall align the appropriate portions of the preschool through elementary and secondary Education standards with the Career and Technical standards."

Through this process, the updated comprehensive occupational standards and competencies by CTE content area have been aligned and verified with the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) for Mathematics and Reading, Writing and Communication. The CTE content areas include:

  • Agriculture
  • Natural Resources & Energy
  • Business & Marketing

  • Family and Consumer Sciences
  • Health
  • STEM

  • Arts & IT
  • Trades and Industry
  • Alternative Cooperative Education-ACE)

​Additionally, all CTE content areas were aligned where appropriate to Colorado standards for Science; Social Studies; Health and Physical Education; Postsecondary & Workforce Readiness; Music; Visual Arts, Theatre, Dance and World Languages.

View the Standards

Colorado CTE has created a standards site that houses all of the current CTE standards for each content area. View instructions for navigating the site.


For more information, contact Sara Heath, PhD, Assistant Provost – Career and Technical Education, 720-858-2399.