The National Association of Agricultural Educators, Inc.
1410 King Street, Suite 400, Alexandria, Virginia 22314

News & Views

Volume XLII No. 4 May/June 2000

Team Ag*Ed: The Key to Our Preferred Future
submitted at the Editor’s request by
Dr. Rosco Vaughn, Executive Director,
The National Council for Agricultural Education

Rosco VaughnAgricultural educators pride themselves on developing quality initiatives in a timely manner. As we prepare for the third millennium, what could be more appropriate than implementing the third strategic plan for agricultural education? Perhaps the old phrase, "third time is a charm" will hold true as we strive to establish our preferred future for agricultural education.

The first agricultural education strategic plan was created in 1989 as an outcome of a National Summit on Agricultural Education conducted in Washington, DC. This plan was promoted as being developed by representatives of the total agricultural education community. During 1994-95, leaders of agricultural education again focused their energies on strategic planning at another Washington, DC meeting. They met as the Vision 2000 Task Force and developed the second strategic plan for agricultural education. The strategy of Vision 2000 was "to build upon the first strategic plan." Major attention was given to revising the mission statement and considering initiatives for implementation of the 1989 plan. The first two strategic plans were developed with input solely from the "agricultural education leadership." Little effort was made to secure the support of those outside the leadership circles.

The third strategic plan is an outcome of the Reinventing Agricultural Education for the Year 2020 Project (RAE 2020). It should be noted that all three plans have common elements. For example, all three include goals for: 1) continually improving and expanding agricultural education, 2) meeting the diverse needs of learners, 3) providing education about agriculture for all people and 4) building partnerships to generate the resources for achieving excellence in agricultural education. However, a major difference between the RAE 2020 effort and the first two is that over 10,000 individuals participated in nationwide meetings and provided input into the vision, mission and goals that are now part of the third National Strategic Plan and Action Agenda for Agricultural Education. Common themes surfaced nationwide from this broad base of diverse stakeholders are included in the new national plan.

Another difference is that RAE 2020 produced tools for local, state and regional groups to develop their own vision, mission and goals for agricultural education. A Community-based Program Planning Manual was developed for guiding these groups in developing their plans and action agendas for ensuring the preferred future for agricultural education at any level. Also during 1996, agricultural education developed another tool to help deliver high quality agricultural education called "A Guide to Local Program Success."

The Vision 2000 participants realized that a major weakness of the first strategic plan was the implementation component and they developed some action steps to try to address this problem. However, as we reach the midpoint of year 2000, the issue of who will "make it happen" still exists. The question today, is how can agricultural education achieve its major goals? A major step toward implementing our goals is broadening the support base from only the national leadership to a diverse group of stakeholders at all levels—local, state, regional and national.

To achieve success in implementing our third strategic plan, we must view agricultural education as a team effort that requires every player (stakeholder) to contribute to a winning agenda. Team Ag*Ed is a concept developed by the Agricultural Education National Headquarters to help ensure a diverse group of agricultural education stakeholders achieve excellence in preparing students for personal growth and career success through agricultural education. Every professional agricultural educator should be actively involved in recruiting a broad and diverse agricultural education team to help create the preferred future for agricultural education. They should also be prepared to lead their team in implementing the goals and plans they develop.

The Council has called a National Summit on Agricultural Education for February 8-10, 2001. At the Summit, local and state ag ed leaders will share best practices and successes that have resulted from RAE 2020. The Summit will also help state and national leaders become more effective in leading Team Ag*Ed.

Today we have the tools to become highly proactive in creating our preferred future. The Guide to Local Program Success and the Community-based Program Planning Guide provide the framework, proven strategies and best practices for planning, goal setting and implementing the outcomes of our planning efforts. These are powerful tools for mobilizing a local community, region, state, or nation and creating synergistic support for agricultural education at all levels. Successfully implementing the "Team Ag*Ed Concept" provides our best hope for creating a successful future for agricultural education.

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Ideas Unlimited

2000 Summer Workshops

ACTE Election Results

Regional Updates

2000 Freshman Scholarship Winners

Teacher Spotlight

2000 NAAE Convention Schedule

2000 NAAE Convention Registration

Delmar Thompson Learning

DeWalt Tools

Excel Communications Fundraising

Washington Beat

Dates and Events

Success for the New Millennium

Thanks Ray - Welcome Sarah

NFRBMEA Annual Conference

New Council Instructional Materials

National Ag Ed Listserv

2000 NAAE Convention

December 2-6, 2000

San Diego, California
Holiday Inn on the Bay
(see pages 6-7)


May/June 2000
NAAE News & Views
Page 1