Minnesota Perkins Model

State Governance

Formation of the Perkins Career and Technical Education Consortium Model

Minnesota’s school districts and the two-year colleges of Minnesota State are self-formed into twenty-three Perkins consortia to promote collaborative planning and implementation of CTE programs within their regions. In identifying initial membership in the state’s Perkins consortia, CTE leaders were asked to consider the following for their regions of the state: 

  • CTE program improvement 
  • Anticipated programs of study 
  • Dual and concurrent enrollment opportunities 
  • Collaborative history and culture 
  • High school to college matriculation patterns 
  • Geography 
  • An operating structure that gives special attention to capitalizing on the strengths of the existing basic grant 
  • Continuation of effective collaborative activities that promote high school to college transition 
  • A decision-making model that would equitably and effectively address CTE programming 

This consortium model created under Perkins IV will continue under Perkins V. CTE state leaders at Minnesota State and MDE reserve the right to approve the final membership of any Perkins consortium to ensure that no eligible college or school district is excluded (Refer to the Perkins consortium map on the back cover of this handbook). 


Responsibilities of Perkins State Leadership

Ten percent of the federal Perkins Grant funds received by the state are used to conduct state leadership activities to improve CTE. Section 124 of Perkins V specifies how states will 

undertake these responsibilities. States are required to provide support for: 

  • Preparation for non-traditional fields in current and emerging professions, programs for special populations, and other activities that expose students, including special populations, to high-skill, high-wage, and in-demand occupations 
  • Individuals in state correctional institutions, juvenile justice facilities, and educational institutions that serve individuals with disabilities 
  • Recruiting, preparing, or retaining CTE teachers, faculty, specialized instructional support personnel, or paraprofessionals 
  • Technical assistance for eligible recipients 

States are also required to report on the effectiveness of use of funds to achieve:  

  • The state’s strategic vision and goals for preparing an educated and skilled workforce (including special populations) and for meeting the skilled workforce needs of employers 
  • State-determined levels of performance 
  • Reductions in disparities or performance gaps 

In addition to these responsibilities, Minnesota State and MDE promote development of high-quality programs of study and provide professional development and technical assistance to consortia as required on a wide range of Perkins-related topics. State staff ensure fund-use effectiveness through a consortium monitoring process described later in this handbook. 

Professional development for and by Minnesota CTE professionals is comprehensive, sustained, and multifaceted. It includes resources designed to support administration of the Perkins V Grant and improve postsecondary and secondary educators’ and workforce professionals’ effectiveness in increasing student success. 

Professional development is delivered through relevant and timely methods and media, including, but not limited to, webinars, conferences, multimedia sessions, trainings, written materials, workshops, and courses. State staff also produce an annual webinar series for consortium members to address questions about Perkins fiscal and accountability practices and to orient new consortium coordinators. 

The two prominent professional development events offered by CTE staff each year are the annual consortium coordinators’ meeting and the CTE Works! Summit: 

  • The consortium coordinators’ meeting is an invitation-only, day-long workshop for Minnesota CTE consortium leaders to meet with each other and share promising practices for administering the Perkins Grant and managing consortia 
  • The CTE Works! Summit is a 1.5-day professional conference open to nearly 500 secondary, postsecondary, workforce, community, and industry partners supporting all aspects of CTE and career pathways from across Minnesota and neighboring states 

Access the training schedule and webinar recordings at CTE Professional Development.


Statewide Communication and Engagement

Minnesota State and MDE are fully committed to working with educators and administrators to increase awareness and understanding of CTE through public relations, marketing, and professional communications to stakeholders. 

Minnesota State and MDE regularly partner with professional organizations serving educators, business and industry leaders, and national CTE organizations to strengthen our commitment to student success from high school to college and beyond. 

Partnerships include regional and state activities that promote development of career pathways, strengthen teacher preparation programs, explore work-based and experiential learning and employer engagement opportunities, and support success for youth and adults from underrepresented populations. 

Minnesota State and MDE provide communications in a variety of media for internal and external partners, as well as stakeholders. The best communication inspires and motivates people, helps them take action, and removes obstacles to understanding. Cross-communication is highly encouraged between state staff and Perkins consortium leaders. 

Each consortium in Minnesota has identified a postsecondary and a secondary consortium leader who is the primary contact for the administration of the grant in each consortium. In some consortia, this may be two or more people per consortium. 

The preferred formal communication method for requesting and exchanging information between state staff and Perkins consortium leaders is email. 

Formal communication typically revolves around the following: 

  • Annual Performance Report (APR) notices 
  • Perkins local application submission, review, and approval 
  • Performance targets 
  • Improvement plan notices 
  • Perkins annual allocations 
  • Consortium monitoring review notices 
  • Due dates and deadlines 

Minnesota State and MDE recognize informal communication as a critical method to stay engaged and connected with Perkins consortium leaders and the CTE community. Perkins consortium leaders and state staff are highly encouraged to share information using these information communication channels, such as: 

In addition, Minnesota State and MDE regularly request feedback and evaluation from Perkins consortium leaders and CTE participants for continuous improvement efforts. The preferred method for collecting feedback is through online surveys, but in some cases paper evaluations are used. In some situations, it may be necessary or more effective to collect face- to-face feedback. 

Examples of feedback collected from Perkins consortium leaders include feedback on: 

  • Events (e.g., workshops, conferences, webinars, monitoring visits) 
  • Technical assistance 
  • Professional development offerings and activities 
  • The Perkins local application process 
  • Business processes and procedures 

Feedback collected is used to make improvements to better serve Perkins consortium leaders and the broader CTE community. 

Consortium Governance

Consortium Membership Requirements

  • Each consortium must have at least one eligible secondary school district member and at least one eligible postsecondary college member 
  • No school district or college may belong to more than one consortium 
  • Charter schools with a state-approved CTE program who request membership shall be invited to participate in a consortium 
  • State CTE leaders reserve the right to mediate the final consortium structure to ensure that no interested college or school district is excluded 
  • Representatives from Adult Basic Education, CareerForce (formerly known as the Minnesota Workforce system), business and industry, and community organizations may be invited by the local consortium to participate as partners 


Consortium Governance Structure

The consortium governance structure is determined by the consortium with the following requirements: 

  1. The superintendent(s) and college president(s) of participating secondary and postsecondary consortium members identify at least one secondary and one postsecondary Perkins coordinator.
  2. Each consortium must develop a single biennial application and unified budget to guide the planning, implementation, and use of funds for improving CTE programs in their consortium. Budgets must be updated annually. 
  3. Each consortium identifies one secondary fiscal host school district and one postsecondary fiscal host college with the responsibility to manage funds distributed to the consortium in accordance with the Perkins V Act and Minnesota state law.
  4. The defined leadership structure of the consortium maintains authority for all secondary and postsecondary spending decisions. Independent spending authority may not be delegated to any individual school district or college partner.
  5. The consortium’s biennial application includes initiatives to support the mission and vision for CTE in Minnesota as established by the Minnesota State Perkins Plan and the plan to meet the state-determined levels of performance required under the law by the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Career, Technical, and Adult Education. 
  6. The consortium application receives approval and signature support from each member school district superintendent and each member college president to show agreement with the content and to indicate understanding of requirements 

Procedure for Changing Consortium Membership

It is the intent of the Minnesota 4-Year State Plan that the Perkins consortium structure will provide consistent and effective CTE planning and program operation for the region. As such, changes in the membership of a Perkins consortium must be made with careful consideration of the effects on students, member institutions, and the consortium. Minnesota CTE state leaders at Minnesota State and MDE reserve the right to approve the final membership of any Perkins consortium to ensure that no eligible college or any eligible school district is excluded. If a school district, not currently a member of any Perkins consortium, wants to join a Perkins consortium, or if a consortium member school district or college wishes to withdraw from one Perkins consortium and join a different consortium, the following shall apply: 

  1. The Minnesota state director of career and technical education must receive a written letter of intent requesting consideration of change and a rationale for such change in consortium membership from the superintendent of the consortium member school district or the president of the member college requesting the change. This letter must be received by October 1 (the required date of the APR submission) of the year prior to any actual change so that data-driven decisions can be made by all stakeholders. The timeline is applicable for all consortium membership changes. 
  2. The Minnesota state director of career and technical education must receive written acknowledgement of the requested change in membership indicating an understanding of the implications of such change from all consortium member superintendent(s) and college president(s) from both consortia involved. In the case of a request to join a consortium, all consortium member superintendent(s) and college president(s) from the two consortia involved must indicate their agreement with the requested change. 
  3. The written request for consortium membership change and the acknowledgement by all members from both consortia must include evidence of consideration of the following potential impacts on the consortia: 

    a. Financial impact of changes in the census, geographic, participation, and Pell Grant variables that determine the level of the consortium’s Perkins funding. 

    b. Changes in consortium performance on state- determined performance levels. 

    c. Availability of CTE programming for all students in the consortium. 

    d. Effect on existing articulated and dual-credit agreements between secondary and postsecondary member Institutions. 

    e. Changes in consortium’s state-recognized programs of study. 

    f. Changes in consortium leadership, personnel, and governance structure.
  4. Where withdrawal from or addition to a consortium would affect funds received by the consortium due to population or program participation, such change would become effective at the beginning of the fiscal year after the end of the next fiscal year (e.g., a withdrawal request submitted prior to June 30, 2020 would be effective July 1, 2021).

Roles and Responsibilities of Perkins Consortium Coordinators

The roles and responsibilities of Perkins consortium coordinators are to: 

  1. Collaboratively facilitate development of the biennial local unified secondary/postsecondary Perkins consortium application and budget—including budget updates and plan changes in intervening years. Submit the application through the Minnesota State grant management system online by May 1st of each year. The local application must include the consortium’s initiatives to meet state- determined levels of performance required under the law by the U.S. Department of Education; Office of Career, Technical, and Adult Education (OCTAE). 
  2. Facilitate completion of a comprehensive local needs assessment (CLNA) not less than every two years and prior to submission of the local consortium application for Perkins V funding. The CLNA can be limited to the consortium or can be regional in scope. 
  3. Manage consortium activities and budget to meet the unified goals of the consortium and requirements of the Perkins Law. 
  4. Submit an APR online using the Minnesota State grant management system by October 1st each year. 
  5. Provide, or arrange with state CTE leadership to provide, technical assistance and professional development to assist consortium partners with achieving consortium goals and meeting state-determined performance measures. 
  6. Coordinate development and implementation of state- recognized programs of study among high schools and the Minnesota State college partner in the consortium. Each local Perkins consortium is required to have in place six state-recognized programs of study. Each program of study must meet the seven minimum requirements specified in the State- recognized Programs of Study User Guide
  7. Participate in the CTE fall conference (CTE Works! Summit) and the annual one-day Perkins consortium coordinators' meeting led by state CTE leadership. 

Procedure for Appointing Consortium Coordinators & Fiscal Agents 

Each Perkins consortium in Minnesota includes at least one eligible secondary member school district and at least one eligible postsecondary member college. Accordingly, consortia appoint both secondary and postsecondary coordinators and fiscal agents responsible for local Perkins administration. 

Member college presidents or district superintendents must notify, in writing, the state director of career and technical education at the Minnesota State System Office to appoint individuals to these roles. An email from the college president or district superintendents will suffice. 

When coordinators and fiscal agents leave their positions, new individuals must be appointed in the same manner. If your consortium is submitting a Perkins application and it is known that coordinators or fiscal agents will change in the next year, include that information in the application. 

Perkins Annual Workflow

The annual workflow cycle pictured below identifies important dates and deadlines consortium leaders need to know to meet state requirements. The annual cycle also lists key events in which consortium leaders are highly encouraged to participate. For more information, see Appendix B.