[Excerpt] High school career-technical education (CTE) is a massive enterprise. Last year high school students spent more than 1.5 billion hours in vocational courses of one kind or another. Of the twenty-six courses taken by the typical high school graduate, 4.2 are career-tech courses (NCES 2003a).
Courses in general labor market preparation (principles of technology, industrial arts, typing, keyboarding, etc) and family and consumer sciences are offered in almost every lower and upper-secondary school. High school graduates in the year 2000 took 1.2 full-year introductory CTE courses during upper-secondary school and probably almost as many during middle school (NCES 2003a).