CTHS Letterhead

FAQ’s (Frequently Asked Questions)

How is the Dr. Kirk Lewis Career and Technical High School (CTHS) organized?

What are the benefits for students choosing to attend CTHS?

What are the expectations for students?

How are seats allocated at CTHS?

Which students may apply to CTHS?

How does a student apply to CTHS?

Is there a fee to apply to CTHS?

How are students selected for CTHS?

How are students notified of their selection for CTHS?

How do students confirm their selection to CTHS?

What is the commitment to CTHS once the student is admitted?

Can a student choose to return to their home campus high school?

Does a student have to reapply each year once they have been admitted to CTHS?

Can a student transfer from one zoned high school campus to another for the purpose of obtaining a seat at CTHS?

Since CTHS will not offer extracurricular courses, may students return to their zoned campus for those courses?

What happens if completion of the pathway is compromised?

Can a student change their career program/pathway once accepted to CTHS?

How are students receiving special education services served at the CTHS?

Will there be support services for English Language Learners (ELL) at Career and Technical High School?

Does CTHS have an art program?

Does CTHS have a physical education program?

Are there student organizations and clubs at CTHS?

How is senior class information and events communicated to students at CTHS?

Which campus will issue the student’s diploma?

Does CTHS have a graduation ceremony?

What type of courses are offered at CTHS?

How do students access and utilize technology at Career and Technical High School?

Are students allowed to have "off" periods at CTHS?

What are some of the features that make Career and Technical High School unique?




How is the Dr. Kirk Lewis Career and Technical High School (CTHS) organized?

The Career and Technical High School (CTHS) is an application-based school of choice serving students in grades 9-12 in a full day school setting.

Students will receive core course instruction (Mathematics, English/Language Arts, Science, and Social Studies), elective course instruction (Languages Other Than English, Health, Art) and highly specialized Career and Technical course instruction in a career program of their choice.

Students will also have the opportunity to fulfill their Art and Physical Education course requirements at the Career and Technical High School. They may also choose to participate in a performing Fine Arts or Athletic program at their home comprehensive high school, although it will not always be possible or convenient. A UIL class on the zoned campus may not be offered at a time that is compatible with students’ CTHS schedules or shuttle bus transportation. However, students may be able to compete in some UIL events without participating in the related class.

The Career and Technical High School is organized around six career academies with specific career-oriented programs and pathways within each academy.The six career academies are:

Agriculture Academy

Business & Human Service Academy

Health Services Academy

Manufacturing & Construction Academy

Technology & Engineering Academy

Transportation & Shipping Academy

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What are the benefits for students choosing to attend the Career and Technical High School?

Students may have opportunities to:

Choose a career-oriented program within one of six career academies

Engage in rigorous and relevant career-related and project-based learning activities

Graduate from high school with career-related experiences

Complete an industry-recognized certification or license (if applicable)

Earn college credits through an academic partnership with San Jacinto College, dual-credit or Advanced Placement courses

Participate in internships, mentorships, or field experiences within their chosen career pathway (if available)

Interact with business, industrial and community partners and leaders within their chosen career field

Give of themselves to their school, district, and community through community service activities

Build friendships with students from other campuses and districts through collaborative and competitive activities and career-technical student organizations

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What are the expectations for students?

The following expectations will apply to all students who attend the Career and Technical High School:

Carry a full schedule load each year in grades 9-12 (no early release or “off periods”)

Be registered in the course sequence appropriate for their chosen program and career pathway

Complete advanced course work prior to graduation

Complete a minimum number of hours of community service as submitted to and documented by CTHS

Take the PSAT as a 10th and 11th grade student

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How are seats allocated at the Career and Technical High School?

Specific career-oriented programs are taught within each of the six career academies.

Each career-oriented program has a total number of available seats.

Each of the five PISD comprehensive high schools will be allocated a specific number of seats in each career program.

The number of seats allocated to a particular high school is based upon that campus’ total student enrollment as a percentage of the total high school student enrollment for PISD. This will ensure that students from each high school have an opportunity to participate in each career program and academy.

The number of available seats within a specific career program will be determined by the vacancies created by graduates, current students changing their pathway, and students choosing to return to their home campus.

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Which students may apply to the Career and Technical High School?

The Career & Technical High School is a school of choice open to all high school students in the Pasadena Independent School District.

Applicants must be current 8th, 9th, or 10th grade students in the Pasadena ISD and zoned to attend one of the district’s five comprehensive high schools.

Students must complete and submit all application documents within the specified application timeline. Incomplete or late applications will not be considered.

There is no fee to complete or submit an application.

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How does a student apply to the Career and Technical High School?

Students will complete an online application that includes:

Student information

Selection of a career-oriented program within one of six career academies

Extra-curricular activity involvement

Essay addressing the student’s choice of career pathway and program

Based upon number of student applicants and program pathway instructor preference, a student interview may also be required

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Is there a fee to apply to CTHS?

No fee is required to apply to CTHS.

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How are students selected for the Career and Technical High School?

Students must complete and submit all application materials by the application deadline.

At the closing of the application period, the completed applications are sorted by the student’s requested career program.

If the number of applicants for a specific career program is fewer than the number of available seats, then all eligible students will be accepted.

If there are more applicants than available seats for a specific program, then all applicants for that program will be awarded points on a new applicant rubric and may be invited to participate in an interview process. Some students will be granted admission following the personal interview.

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How are students notified of their selection for the Career and Technical High School?

All students with a completed application will receive notification of their acceptance for admission to the Career & Technical High School.

Students selected for admission will receive an acceptance letter and parent/student agreement form.

If the acceptance letter is returned as “undeliverable”, the offer to attend the Career & Technical High School may be forfeited. It is critical that accurate mailing addresses be provided and any address changes communicated clearly to the Career & Technical High School.

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How do students confirm their selection to the Career and Technical High School?

Students and parent(s)/guardian(s) must sign and return the agreement form by the date specified. Failure to return the agreement form by the due date may result in the removal of the admission offer to the student.

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What is the commitment to the Career and Technical High School once the student is admitted?

By signing and returning the parent/student agreement form, the student and the parent(s)/guardian(s) are making a one-year commitment for the student to attend the Career & Technical High School.

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Can a student choose to return to their home campus high school?

A student may choose to return to their home campus high school after having been admitted to the Career & Technical High School.

If the student wishes to return to their home high school campus, a conference must be held with the student, parent, and CTHS campus administrator prior to their return.

If a student wants to return to CTHS, he/she will have to schedule a parent conference with the CTHS principal to determine if space is available and if reapplication is permissible.

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Does a student have to reapply each year once they have been admitted to the Career and Technical High School?

No. Once a student has applied and been accepted, their admission renews annually unless the student and/or parent chooses to return to their zoned campus high school.

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Can a student transfer from one zoned high school campus to another for the purpose of obtaining a seat at the Career and Technical High School?

No. Since the Career & Technical High School is a school of choice open to all high school students within the district, there is no reason for a student to submit a transfer. If the Career & Technical High School becomes aware that a student has transferred to gain an advantage for the purposes of admission, the offer of admission will be immediately revoked and the student returned to their last high school campus of enrollment.

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Since the Career and Technical High School will not offer extracurricular courses, may students return to their zoned campus for those courses?

Beginning in the 17-18 school year, students in the incoming freshman class (Class of 2021) will not shuttle to their zoned high school campus to participate in extracurricular athletics or fine arts.

Students in grades 10, 11, and 12 who are currently participating will be allowed to continue the shuttle service at 4th and 7th periods only. The student’s grades earned while enrolled at the Career and Technical High School will be used to determine the student’s UIL eligibility status.

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What happens if completion of the pathway is compromised?

When the completion of a pathway is not a possibility, the CTHS administration will confer with the home campus administration to determine if a return for the student to the home campus is a viable option.

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Can a student change their career program/pathway once accepted to the Career and Technical High School?

A student may submit a request to change their career program/pathway one time after acceptance to the CTHS.

The student must follow the required process for requesting a change in their career program/pathway as coordinated by the campus counseling center.

The student and parent(s) must understand that a change of program/pathway may result in a student having to take one or more prerequisite courses designed for students at a lower grade level and the possibility of completing courses during summer or evening school to create room within the student’s schedule for the newly selected career program/pathway courses.

Once a student begins their 11th grade year, the student must continue their chosen career pathway through to graduation.

Current students will have first priority to change their pathway before offers are made to incoming students.

All requests for changes are subject to space available requirements.

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How are students receiving special education services served at the Career and Technical High School?

Students will be served according to their Individual Education Plans (IEP) through instructional support in a regular classroom setting. Students whose Individual Education Plans indicate that they should receive modified content in a subject area will be served in a regular classroom setting with content modifications implemented by the teachers.

A special education transition counselor, support facilitation teachers, and special education case managers will ensure proper implementation of all Individual Education Plans.

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Will there be support services for English Language Learners (ELL) at Career and Technical High School?

Yes. Career and Technical High School will support ELL students by providing a regular education setting that will include Sheltered Instruction Observation Protocol (SIOP) classes.

During SIOP classes the students will receive ELL support through specialized trained staff.

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Does the Career and Technical High School have an art program?

Yes. Students will be able to earn their fine arts credit through an art class, floral design class, or digital graphics course.

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Does the Career and Technical High School have a physical education program?

Yes. Students will be able to earn their physical education credit through a health and wellness-based physical education course including weight training and aerobic fitness activities.

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Are there student organizations and clubs at the Career and Technical High School?

Yes. There are numerous opportunities for students to participate in leadership, service and honor organizations. Career-Technical Student Organizations (CTSO’s) will be available in each academy and many specific career pathways. Clubs and organizations based on student interest may also be available.

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How is senior class information communicated to students at the Career and Technical High School?

Students may participate in the Senior Prom and graduation ceremonies with their classmates at their zoned high school campus.

Vendors for senior pictures, class rings, panoramic pictures, graduation announcements, caps, and gowns will also serve students at the Career and Technical High School.

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Which campus will issue the student’s diploma?

The student's home comprehensive high school will issue their diploma.

Students may participate in the graduation ceremony from their home comprehensive high school.

Students will be ranked with and eligible for all academic recognitions at their home campus high school.

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Does CTHS have a graduation ceremony?

Yes. CTHS seniors have the option of participating in their home comprehensive high school's graduation ceremony or in the CTHS graduation ceremony.

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What type of course are offered at CTHS?

Traditional on-level courses

Pre-Advanced Placement and Advanced Placement courses

Dual Credit opportunities

Specialized electives that support CTE pathways

Student support (e.g., SIOP, support facilitation)

20 CTE programs with industry-recognized curriculum and equipment

Academic partnership with San Jacinto College

All course offerings will be based on student requests

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How do students access and utilize technology at Career and Technical High School?

Career and Technical High School will be a 1:1 campus which means each student and teacher will be issued a personal device for use both at school and home.

CTHS will be a completely wireless environment in which students and teachers will be able to access the internet anywhere within the building.

Campus and teacher websites will be readily available for students, parents and community members to access.

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Are students allowed to have "off" periods at CTHS?

No.  Students will be attending the full school day at CTHS.

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What are some of the features that make Career and Technical High School unique?

Choice! A student is able to choose their own career pathway.

Career and Technical High School will be a 1:1 campus which means each student and teacher will be issued a personal device to use both at school and home.

CTHS will be a wireless learning environment.

Collaborative classrooms and spaces

Research center

Student run bistro

Cosmetology salon

Pet-grooming center

Child care Center

Robotics testing and competition arena

Outdoor jogging trail with fitness stations

Court room

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