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Illinois State Fact Sheet

CTE State Overview

At the secondary level, CTE is delivered through comprehensive high schools; CTE-focused secondary schools, which are schools that center secondary academics around specific careers; and area career centers, which provide supplementary career training to area high school students and adult learners.

At the postsecondary level, Illinois delivers CTE through its community college districts.

CTE Program Excellence

Exemplary CTE Programs in Illinois

*Home to three of America’s most challenging high schools, according to The Washington Post, Maine Township District 207—including Maine East, South and West High Schools—features excellent CTE programs integrating technical and academic content, including Project Lead the Way courses in Introduction to Engineering Design, Civil Engineering and Architecture, Computer Integrated Manufacturing and Digital Electronics, as well as Family and Consumer Sciences; Entrepreneurship; Accounting; Marketing; Computer Programming; and a Certified Nursing Assistant program. At Maine East, the Geo-Construction course enables students to apply geometry and building trade skills to projects such as framing a house for Habitat for Humanity. In addition, District 207 is increasing career exploration, including a large investment in student internships as well as class speakers, job shadowing, mentorship and short-term career exploration across departments in a company or organization. (Information from IACTE)

* At Joliet Township High School (JTHS) District 204, students explore career options as they progress through the Freshman Academy, participating in a school-wide initiative to develop their electronic individualized career plan (ICP). The ICP helps students select a career pathway in the Academy of Arts and Communication, Academy of Business Management and Information Systems, Academy of Health and Medicine, Academy of Human Services or Academy of STEM. Required job shadowing has resulted in placements with more than 350 businesses over the past decade, and the district continues to add work-based learning opportunities. District 204 has expanded Advanced Placement (AP) programs to include two CTE courses, AP Computer Science Principles and AP Computer Science A. Among JTHS’ program offerings are Project Lead the Way courses in biomedical science and engineering; a nationally accredited automotive program; the occupational child care program, offering an early childhood education credential; and the culinary arts program, which is supported by the Illinois Restaurant Association and includes opportunities for students to obtain a ProStart certification. The district continues to expand dual credit opportunities with Joliet Junior College and area universities. (Information from IACTE, JTHS and the Office of Community College Research and Leadership)

Labor Market Trends

  • 53 percent of Illinois’s labor market consists of middle-skill jobs, but only 42 percent of the state’s workers are trained at the middle-skill level.


  • The top 5 industries for “good jobs” that pay a median income of $55,000+without a bachelor’s degree are office and administrative support, management, production, transportation and material moving, and construction and extraction.

Enrollment Data

(OCTAE 2014-2015)

Secondary: 255,714

Postsecondary: 163,205


Student Performance

(OCTAE 2014-2015)

95 percent of CTE high school students graduated

76 percent met performance goals for technical skills

78 percent of CTE postsecondary students met performance goals for technical skills

Perkins Funding


Illinois received $40,276,006 for Fiscal Year 2014, about $250,000 less than in 2014 and $8.8 million less than in 2010.