Career Center Funding by APS

Career Center Funding by APS

In 2016, the Arlington Career Center (ACC) had a budget of 7.5 million dollars. Since then, its budget has increased 85%, now at 13.9 million dollars. These numbers contrast the other public high schools (Wakefield, Washington-Liberty and Yorktown) in the Arlington Public Schools’ (APS) district when evaluated on a per-student basis. With an enrollment of 2,577, our school’s budget totals to about $10,000 per student, while the ACC’s budget is significantly more at approximately $27,000 per student, with only 550 enrolled full-time. Although this may raise concern, the vast difference between funds is warranted.

The ACC is the Career and Technical Education (CTE) center for our school district. The program aims to give APS students an opportunity to find and explore their field of interest by giving students career-applicable experience in and out of the classroom. While funding for the Career Center has increased and been consistently higher than that of other APS high schools, the unique opportunities it provides for all students are extremely beneficial.

All APS high schools offer CTE classes. However, the ACC’s wider selection allows for exploration in fields unavailable at any other APS school. Because of this, Career Center classes are open to all APS high school students. Yorktown senior Sofia Atmar takes Anatomy and Physiology at the ACC. Through the Career Center’s partnership with the Northern Virginia Community College, Atmar will go to a cadaver lab and examine the inner workings of the human body on a real corpse. Senior Luke DiBenigno is enrolled in the Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) class at the career center. He’ll have the opportunity to become EMT certified and work on ambulances and in emergency rooms. These real-world experiences widen students’ perspectives on their fields of interest, something only available at the Career Center.

Available at only four high schools in the state of Virginia, the Aviation Technology program offered at the ACC teaches students how to fly a plane; upon passing the class and the Federal Aviation Administration Private Pilot Exam, students are able to earn their Private Pilot License. The ACC has two flight simulators in the aviation room to create hands-on learning. Ranging from about $2,000 to $4,000, the simulators consist of three large monitors and the necessary equipment needed to fly, such as a joystick, throttle and pedals.

Along with Aviation Technology, the engineering program is one of the most popular at the ACC. The program excels in its quantity and quality of resources. Unlike most APS high schools, the Career Center has three engineering teachers. Our school, for comparison, has only one. The advanced technology and higher quantity of teachers at the Career Center is vital, and while the extra resources are expensive, they are a huge aid to the education of students.

Arlington Tech senior Benito Esposti is a prime example of how a motivated student can use the resources at the ACC for educational benefit. Planning on a career in aerospace engineering, Esposti has expanded his knowledge in the fields of engineering and aviation through the classes and equipment provided by the ACC.

With a variety of specialized classes and state-of-the-art technology to spark a career, it would be a detriment to all APS students if they do not take advantage of the ACC and continue to make its funding worth it.

Story continues below advertisement
Leave a comment
More to Discover
About the Contributor
Ajay Allman, Opinion Editor
Junior Ajay Allman is The Yorktown Sentry's Opinion Editor and is in his second year on staff. He's excited to lead the opinion section and help share the perspectives of Yorktown. In addition to his love for journalism, he is interested in neuroscience and is the president of the YHS Neuroscience Club. Outside of school, he loves to listen to music and expand his taste in tunes!

Comments (0)

All Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *