ASSOCIATION FOR CAREER & TECHNICAL EDUCATION®
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On June 14, the Senate Appropriations Committee approved the Fiscal Year (FY) 2013 Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education spending bill by a vote of 16-14 along party lines. The bill provides $158 billion for a range of federal Labor-HHS-Ed programs and includes level funding for Perkins! While we are still in the early stages of the appropriations process, this is a very positive sign that Congress recognizes the value and importance of CTE. Thank you for all your great advocacy work! In another victory, the committee also included a proposal in the bill to change the name of the Office of Vocational and Adult Education to the Office of Career, Technical, and Adult Education. This is an issue that ACTE has been working on for a number of years and we are very pleased to see this positive momentum.
Overall, education programs were increased by approximately $408 million, including new funding for a postsecondary innovation fund. For more information on specific funding levels for education programs, view this chart provided by the Committee for Education Funding. Most Department of Labor workforce development programs were also level-funded.
Another positive development included in the bill was an amendment, sponsored by Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA), that restores Pell Grant eligibility for students qualifying under the “Ability to Benefit” (ATB) provision in the Higher Education Act, which targets students without a high school diploma or its equivalent who demonstrate college readiness, who are participating in career pathway programs. This is also an issue that ACTE had been working on and we hope to see this restoration also included in the House bill.
The House Labor-HHS-ED Appropriations Subcommittee could consider their FY 2013 spending bill as early as next week. Please continue to reach out to your Member of Congress and urge them to support funding for CTE!
Posted by Mitch Coppes on 06/15/2012 at 01:09 PM in Federal Funding, Perkins | Permalink
The Institute for Education Sciences just announced the winners of the latest winners of State Longitudinal Data Systems (SLDS) grants. The grants were awarded in three categories:
The third category is of the most interest to CTE stakeholders, as this linkage is critical for reporting on the future success of students in CTE programs. Fourteen entities were awarded grants in this category, including:
States will use the funds to implement three-year projects as described in their project abstracts and applications, which can be found on the IES website.
Posted by Alisha Hyslop on 06/15/2012 at 01:08 PM in Data and Research, State and Local Issues | Permalink
On Tuesday, the Senate Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations Subcommittee held a markup of the Fiscal Year (FY) 2013 appropriations bill, which includes funding for education and workforce training programs like Perkins. The full Senate Appropriations Committee will now have to approve the bill before it goes to the Senate floor. They are expected to vote on the bill Thursday, June 14. The committee will likely not release the exact funding level for Perkins and other programs until after that markup.
The bill passed the subcommittee on Tuesday by a party-line vote, with Republican members in opposition. Chairman Tom Harkin (D-IA) lamented the lack of bipartisan support for the bill that he called fiscally responsible and aligned with spending levels agreed to in the Budget Control Act. Ranking Republican Senator Richard Shelby (R-AL) expressed concerns about curbing government spending and the need to reduce the national debt. However, he also acknowledged that a balanced budget will never be achieved through reductions in discretionary spending alone. Republicans cited funding for President Obama’s health care reforms law, known as “obamacare,” as their primary reason for opposing the bill. Sen. Shelby vowed not to support any appropriations measure that includes funding for health care reform and argued for defunding all discretionary spending for the law.
Tuesday’s markup was the first major step in the FY 2013 funding process for Perkins and other education programs. The House Appropriations Committee has not yet scheduled a markup for their bill, but it is expected to happen in the next few weeks.
Posted by Mitch Coppes on 06/13/2012 at 01:13 PM in Federal Funding | Permalink
The House Education and Workforce Committee met yesterday to mark up the Workforce Investment Improvement Act of 2012 (H.R. 4297). Introduced by Representative Virginia Foxx (R-NC), the bill would reauthorize the Workforce Investment Act.
Causing controversy between the Republicans and Democrats on the committee was the fact that Rep. Foxx’s bill consolidates 27 programs into a single workforce investment fund. By consolidating the programs and allowing state and local workforce investment boards more flexibility on how to spend the money, Rep. Foxx stated that the job training system will be less bureaucratic and more effective.
On the other side of the Committee, Democrats were concerned that, by consolidating the programs, some groups of people, including low-income, low-skilled, and underrepresented groups, will be left out of or underserved by the job training system. Rep. John Tierney (D-MA) was also concerned that consolidation of the programs would eventually lead to the elimination of the workforce investment system.
While the original version of Ms. Foxx’s bill allowed Perkins funding to be consolidated into the workforce investment fund, ACTE was able to successfully remove it from the list of allowable programs and it remains protected after the Committee markup.
After eight hours of amendments and votes, the bill was passed on a party-line vote with 23 Republicans voting yes and 15 Democrats voting no. Reps. Fudge (D-OH) and Kucinich (D-OH) did not vote, but Rep. Fudge was in attendance.
To watch the video of the markup and to read Republican amendments offered to the bill, check out the Committee’s website. Democrat amendments are posted on their own website, but will soon be included on the main committee site.
Posted by Brendan Desetti on 06/08/2012 at 01:15 PM in WIOA | Permalink
Certificates can provide greater earnings than some associate and bachelor degrees, although the return on investment varies by field of study, according to a new report from the prolific researchers at the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce (CEW). In Certificates: Gateway to Gainful Employment and College Degrees, the CEW researchers present data confirming the tremendous growth over the past three decades in students earning certificates (specifically classroom-based certificates, not industry-approved certifications). In 1984, less than two percent of adults held a certificate as their highest education attainment; by 2009 that percentage was 12 percent. They find that if high-value certificates were counted in government surveys, the United States would move from 15th place to 10th in international rankings of postsecondary completion.Authors Anthony P. Carnevale, Stephen J. Rose and Andrew R. Hanson also find that certificate holders earn 20 percent more on average than high school graduates. In addition, men with certificates earn 39 percent more than the median male with an associate degree and 24 percent more than the median male who holds a bachelor degree. For women with certificates, the percentages are 34 and 23 percent. The economic returns of certificates vary based on several factors:
The report also analyzes certificates by state and by institution type. For instance, for-profit schools award a large share of health care and cosmetology certificates, while public schools award a greater share of skilled trades and business and information technology certificates. In addition, public institutions are more likely to offer stackable credentials toward associate and bachelor degrees. One-third of certificate holders also have at least an associate degree, the study finds; the majority of these received their certificates first.
Posted by Catherine Imperatore on 06/07/2012 at 01:16 PM in Data and Research | Permalink
By: Ashley Parker
Mark Phillips, blogger for Edutopia, professor emeritus at San Francisco State University and an education columnist for the Marin Independent Journal, wrote an article titled “Why We Need Vocational Education” for the Washington Post’s “Answer Sheet” blog, criticizing the bias against vocational, or career and technical, education as “dysfunctional.” The article, which was posted on the Washington Post website today, argues that CTE should be “highly valued, well funded and effectively implemented” on both secondary and postsecondary levels.
Phillips references international examples in this article, such as Finland and Norway, where he has been involved with training CTE instructors, citing their strong educational systems, where 45 percent of students choose a technical track or pathway as opposed to an academic one after completing a basic education. He points to the undervaluation of blue-collar work by society, which places a high value on the professions and white-collar jobs, as to why many educators and parents steer youth away from CTE paths. Philips argues that students should be “trained in whatever skills their natural gifts and preferences lead them to, rather than more or less condemning them to jobs they’ll find meaningless.” To do otherwise is detrimental for students and also detrimental to our economy, Phillips says. Phillips emphasizes the need to re-educate parents regarding the value and opportunity of the many skilled occupations that are currently and will continue to be in demand in our economy. While Phillips feels that “changing societal values will take time,” he notes that many changes have already been made across schools and districts that are providing models to guide other educators. He provides examples of these model schools, mentioning the CTE schools in Arizona that were included in a recent TIME magazine article written by Joe Klein and offering a few others, highlighting academic high schools that are building students’ connection to the workplace through internship programs.
You can read the full article on the Answer Sheet at the Washington Post.
Posted by Sean Lynch on 06/06/2012 at 01:36 PM in In the News | Permalink
As of July 1, newly enrolled students without a high school diploma, or its equivalent, who demonstrate college readiness, will lose access to all federal financial aid.On June 4, thirty-one education and workforce training groups, including ACTE, sent a letter to Senator Harkin (D-IA) concerning the elimination of “Ability to Benefit” provisions in the Higher Education Act. Currently, students without a high school diploma or GED are able to take a test to determine college readiness. If a student passes the test, then the student becomes eligible to receive federal financial aid to complete a course of study. Under the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2012, the funding for this financial aid was eliminated.While the number of students benefiting from this financial aid is small, they are growing at an increasing rate. Also, recent studies have shown that these students are outperforming similar students in credits and certificates earned.As the federal government continues to look for ways to save dollars and boost the economy, it is important to remember that as our population continues to age and retire from the workforce, we will become increasingly reliant on all populations to pick up those jobs and to keep the economy moving. We should be focused on developing a highly skilled and educated workforce, not cutting education funding for those who need it the most.
Posted by Brendan Desetti on 06/06/2012 at 09:30 AM | Permalink
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