41 programs to choose from – and where to find them

This article was originally published in The Notebook. In August 2020, The Notebook became Chalkbeat Philadelphia.

In the School District’s career and technical education (CTE) programs, each of which takes three years, students learn the technical theories, competencies, and skills that are used in business, professional settings, and industry. They also engage in a college preparatory academic curriculum.

CTE graduates are equipped with industry knowledge, credentials, and certifications, but they are also prepared for post-secondary educational opportunities such as colleges, universities, technical schools, and apprenticeship programs.

Below are the programs now offered to District high school students. Full descriptions appear in the District’s 2016 High School Directory.

Accounting & Financial Services

Prepares students to provide technical administrative support to professional accountants and other financial management personnel.

Locations: Furness, Kensington Business, Lincoln, and Washington

Animal Sciences

Focuses on the sciences behind the production and health of both large and small animals. Students learn about equine science, dairy husbandry, and beef production, as well as sheep and small lab animals.

Location: Saul High School of Agricultural Sciences

Applied Visual & Interactive Design

Includes instruction in Film & Video Production, Video Game Design, Graphic Design, Graphic Communications/Printing, and Web Design taught by professionals from each of these industries.

Location: Northeast

Autobody Collision Repair

Prepares students to apply technical knowledge and skills to repair damaged vehicles such as automobiles and light trucks.

Locations: Edison, Randolph, Swenson, and The Workshop School

Automotive Technology

Prepares students to apply technical knowledge and skills to service and maintain all types of automobiles and light trucks.

Locations: Edison, Mastbaum, Randolph, Swenson, and The Workshop School

Baking & Pastry Arts

Gives students practical hands-on experience and basic theoretical training in desserts, pastries, candies, decorative work, specialty or artisan breads, high-volume production, and food marketing.

Location: Swenson


Prepares students to shave and trim facial/neck hair and beards, cut and dress hair, fit hairpieces, give facial and scalp massages, apply skin treatments, and prepare for licensure as professional barbers.

Location: Dobbins


Focuses on the connections between students’ science courses and potential solutions to various problems of our modern world.

Location: Roxborough

Business Administration

Prepares students to learn and work within various business and office/administrative operations by introducing them to the latest Microsoft Office Suite that will prepare them to take the Microsoft Office Specialist certification exams.

Locations: Dobbins, Franklin Learning Center, Kensington Business, King, Lincoln, Mastbaum, Overbrook, South Philadelphia, and Roxborough


Prepares students to apply technical knowledge and skills to lay out, fabricate, erect, install, and repair structures and fixtures using hand and power tools.

Locations: Mastbaum, South Philadelphia, and Swenson

Computer Supports Systems Technology

Prepares students to apply basic engineering principles and technical skills in support of professionals who use computer systems.

Locations: Edison, Kensington Urban, and South Philadelphia

Computer Systems Networking

Focuses on the design, implementation, and management of linked systems of computers, peripherals, and associated software.

Locations: Kensington Urban, Swenson, and West Philadelphia

Construction Technologies

Prepares students to apply knowledge and skills in the construction technology field.

Location: Randolph


Prepares students to apply technical knowledge and skills related to a variety of beauty treatments, including the care and enhancement of the condition of hair, complexion, and hands.

Locations: Dobbins and Edison

Culinary Arts

Prepares students for employment related to institutional, commercial, or self-owned food establishments or other food industry occupations.

Locations: Dobbins, Edison, Frankford, Franklin, King, Mastbaum, Randolph, South Philadelphia, Strawberry Mansion, Swenson, and Washington

Dental Assisting

Prepares students to function effectively as integral members of the dental health team.

Locations: Kensington Health Sciences and Randolph

Digital Media Production

Includes, but is not limited to, computer system set-up and maintenance, operating basic computer and communication applications, design and layout of graphic and multimedia images, photography, website, and video and/or audio design and production.

Locations: Creative & Performing Arts (CAPA), Swenson, West Philadelphia

Early Childhood Education & Childcare

Prepares students for a variety of occupations in childcare and guidance, often under the supervision of professional personnel in childcare or day-care centers.

Locations: Edison and South Philadelphia

Electrical & Power Transmission Installation

Prepares students to apply technical knowledge and skills necessary to install, operate, maintain and repair electrically energized residential, commercial, and industrial systems, and DC and AC motors, controls, and electrical distribution panels.

Locations: Edison, Mastbaum, and Swenson


Prepares students to apply basic engineering principles and technical skills in both the mechanical and electrical fields.

Location: Franklin

Electronics Technology

Instructs students to apply basic electronic principles and technical skills to the production, calibration, estimation, testing, assembling, installation, and maintenance of electronic equipment.

Location: Franklin

Emergency Medical Technician

Firefighter Training Academy: Prepares students for certification and careers as Emergency Medical Technicians and firefighters.

Location: Randolph

Engineering Technologies

Prepares students to apply knowledge and skills in the engineering field.

Locations: Carver, Science Leadership Academy, South Philadelphia, Swenson, and The Workshop School

Facility & Property Maintenance

Prepares students to apply technical knowledge and skills to keep a building functioning and to serve a variety of structures, including commercial and industrial buildings and mobile homes.

Location: Strawberry Mansion

Fashion Design

Introduces students to the spectrum of occupations associated with clothing and textile management, production, and services.

Location: Dobbins

Film & Video Production

Introduces students to the art and science of Digital Film & Video Production.

Locations: Bartram, Edison, Fels, Kensington CAPA, Roxborough, and Science Leadership Academy

Food Processing Science

Focuses on the study of food systems, which includes production, processing, and safe handling.

Location: Saul

Graphic Design

Provides students with the knowledge, skills, and portfolio needed to successfully tackle the challenges of college instruction or to pursue a career as a freelance graphic designer.

Locations: Bartram, Dobbins, Edison, Kensington CAPA, King, Mastbaum, and South Philadelphia

Health Information Records Technology

Prepares students to classify medical information and prepare records under the supervision of a medical records administrator.

Location: Mastbaum

Health-Related Technologies

Prepares students to apply knowledge and skills in the health occupations. Instruction is provided in basic skills in a variety of areas, such as health and medical services, pharmaceuticals, and medical instruments and supplies.

Locations: Edison, Kensington Health Sciences, Lincoln, King, Mastbaum, Overbrook, Randolph, Robeson, South Philadelphia, and Swenson


Focuses on the science behind plant production and health.

Locations: Lincoln and Saul

HVAC & Refrigeration Technology

Prepares students to apply technical knowledge and skills to install, repair, and maintain commercial and domestic heating, air conditioning and refrigeration systems.

Location: Edison

Logistics, Materials & Supply Chain Management

Prepares students to manage and coordinate logistical functions in an enterprise and to undertake the responsibilities associated with receiving, storing, shipping, controlling, and distributing products and materials, and the various systems and recordkeeping pertaining to these operations.

Location: Edison

Medical/Clinical Assistant

Prepares students to assist physicians by performing functions related to administrative and clinical duties of a medical office.

Location: Franklin Learning Center

Natural Resource Management

Focuses on the science behind protecting the natural environment. Hands-on skill-building highlights the value of biodiversity and the responsible management of natural resources.

Location: Saul

Plumbing Technology

Prepares students to practice as licensed plumbers by applying technical knowledge, safety, and skills to lay out, assemble, install, and maintain plumbing fixtures and systems for steam, natural gas, oil, hot water, heating, cooling, drainage, lubricating, sprinkling, and industrial processing systems in home and business environments.

Locations: Dobbins, Edison, and Swenson

Precision Machining & Milling

Prepares students to apply technical knowledge and skills in all aspects of shaping metal parts. Instruction involves making computations relating to work dimensions, tooling, and feeds and speeds of machining.

Location: Franklin

Sports Marketing & Management

Prepares students to perform development, marketing, and management functions associated with careers in the sports and entertainment industry.

Locations: Dobbins, Kensington Business, Northeast, and Washington

Vending Machine Technology

Prepares students to apply technical knowledge and skills necessary to repair, install and service vending machines, as well as other commercial units such as ice makers and coffee makers and consumer appliances such as refrigerators.

Location: Randolph

Web Design

Prepares students to apply HTML, XML, Javascript, graphics applications and other authoring tools to the design, editing and publishing (launching) of documents, images, graphics, sound, and multimedia products online.

Location: Roxborough

Welding Technology

Prepares students to apply technical knowledge and skills in gas, arc, shielded, and non-shielded metal arc, brazing, flame-cutting, and plasma welding. Hand, semi-automatic, and automatic welding processes are also included in the instruction.

Locations: Edison, Mastbaum, Randolph, and Franklin