February is CTE (Career and Technical Education) month, and we are highlighting Culinary Arts programs in our districts!  Culinary Arts is a subcategory of the CTE Hospitality and Tourism Career Cluster.  In the hospitality cluster, students learn knowledge and skills that focus on communication, time management, and customer service.  Additionally, students explore the history of the hospitality industry and learn food and beverage basics.

What is Culinary Arts?


The term “Culinary Arts” refers to the art of preparing, planning, cooking, presenting, and serving food. 

 The Texas Education Agency (TEA) describes the Culinary Arts program of study as an introduction of students to occupations and education related to the planning, directing, or coordinating activities of a food and beverage organization. These programs explore opportunities in directing and participating in the preparation and cooking of food.  These courses are designed to prepare students for future careers in hospitality to become food and beverage managers, chefs, head cooks, food science technicians, and more.


Culinary Programs in High School

High school culinary arts curriculum includes the teaching of several core skills:

  • Preparing Ingredients
  • Pairing Foods
  • Plating Dishes
  • Managing a Kitchen
  • Basics of Food Science
  • Customer Service Proficiency

San Antonio ISD Culinary Arts Class

culinary arts school

High school programs can offer training to receive a culinary certificate while in school.  These certifications can include:

  • ServeSafe Manager
  • ManageFirst Professional
  • Certified Fundamentals Cook
  • Certified Fundamentals Pastry Cook

Culinary Pathways

There are numerous schools in our area that offer innovative culinary programs. In Houston’s Clear Creek ISD, the Ed White ESTEM Magnet School offers an outstanding culinary opportunity for students. The three-year course sequence begins with exploring the industries of lodging, restaurants, tourism, travel, and resorts. Students receive job-specific training for entry-level culinary and food service positions. Students in Advanced Culinary Arts learn further techniques of food preparation, creating menus, cooking equipment, and technology. Following these courses is an opportunity for students to take the ServSafe Certification Exam.

While there may not be an academy or magnet high school for culinary arts in every city in Texas, districts have culinary programs in most high schools.  


Clear Creek ISD Culinary Arts Students

culinary students

Southwest ISD’s Southwest Legacy High School Culinary Kitchen

culinary arts school kitchen

Culinary School- After Graduation

Culinary schools are abundant in numerous cities in Texas.  Particularly, San Antonio is home to one of the highest-rated culinary schools in the country at The Culinary Institute of America.  Other culinary schools in Texas also include The International Culinary School at the Art Institutes in Houston and Dallas, as well as the Auguste Escoffier School of Culinary Arts in Austin.


Students in our public high schools have diverse interests, and our school districts provide opportunities to gain valuable technical skills to prepare them for many high-paying careers, like those in the culinary field.  Furthermore, high school students can achieve college credit and/or certification in the area of their choice before graduation. 

It’s a new age in education, and through our public schools’ CTE programs, our students are graduating more career and college ready than ever!


Vote in our Recipe Contest Showcase

We’re spotlighting Culinary Arts programs by featuring a recipe and photo submitted by individual students and student teams. Recipes and photos of the finished dishes are posted and ready for voting. 

Voting is open from February 2nd-5th!


Culinary Arts CTE student chefs

1st PLACE: Teacher receives a $100 Amazon Gift Card

2nd PLACE: Teacher receives a $75 Amazon Gift Card

3rd PLACE: Teacher receives a $50 Amazon Gift Card

Winners will be announced on February 5th.  They will also be featured on our Go Public social media channels and website!



Culinary Schools near me- Texas Culinary Schools and Accredited Programs

Cooking Schools Near Me- The Best Culinary Schools in Texas

Escoffier- What High School Students Should Know About Culinary School 

Education and Career News- Benefits of Culinary School

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