ASSOCIATION FOR CAREER & TECHNICAL EDUCATION®
The Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) has jurisdiction over a number of ACTE’s legislative priorities, including the forthcoming reauthorizations of the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act and the Higher Education Act.
In the 115th Congress, the committee’s 12 Republicans and 11 Democrats will continue to be led by Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), a former U.S. Education Secretary and university president, and Ranking Member Patty Murray (D-Wash.), a former educator.
The committee will also welcome three new members, including Senator Tim Kaine (D-Va.), a co-founder and co-chair of the Senate CTE Caucus. When Senator Kaine’s appointment was announced last month, ACTE issued a press release congratulating him. He will join two other Senate CTE Caucus co-chairs, Senators Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.) and Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.) on the committee.
The two other senators newly appointed to the committee, Senators Todd Young (R-Ind.) and Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.), a former Congressman and Governor, respectively, were both first elected in November 2016. ACTE looks forward to working with Senators Kaine, Young, Hassan and the other HELP members in the new congress.
For a full list of the committee and more information on its newest members, check out this blog from EdWeek.
Posted by Jarrod Nagurka on 01/06/2017 at 12:35 PM in Advocacy Resources, CTE Caucus, In the News | Permalink
CTE Caucus, HELP, Maggie Hassan, Tim Kaine, Todd Young
The House Education and the Workforce Committee today held a hearing to discuss strategies for Perkins reauthorization that will lift up promising models to serve all students with high-quality CTE. Witnesses included Dr. Monty Sullivan of the Louisiana Community Technical College System (an ACTE Educational Institution Member), Mr. Paul Tse of Shapiro and Duncan, Mr. Jason Bates of Toyota Bodine and its Advanced Maintenance Technician Co-op) and Senator Tim Kaine (D-VA).
Sen. Kaine, a co-chair of the Senate CTE Caucus, spoke at length about his passion for CTE before his colleagues in the House, and highlighted several pieces of legislation that he and his fellow co-chairs have introduced to support CTE students. Specific pieces Sen. Kaine referenced included the Middle STEP Act, Educating Tomorrow's Workforce Act, Creating Quality Technical Educators Act and JOBS Act, which would connect CTE students at all levels with additional federal resources and support. Kaine also highlighted the importance of including CTE in the implementation of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) and alignment with other federal education and workforce preparation policies.
Other themes that emerged during the hearing included career guidance support, dual and concurrent enrollment opportunities, industry partnerships and career exploration activities in middle grades. In addition, some members pointed to the critical need for greater federal investment in Perkins to further strengthen our national CTE system. Overall, members of the committee emphasized the important bipartisan nature of Perkins and these reauthorization principles, and expressed optimism that there may be a path forward for a reauthorization bill before the end of this Congress. Check back soon for additional photos from the hearing!
Posted by Sean Lynch on 05/17/2016 at 05:06 PM in CTE Caucus, Federal Funding, In the News, Perkins, Postsecondary Issues | Permalink
On Wednesday, February 10, nearly 150 CTE advocates joined the Senate CTE Caucus in-person or via webcast for a congressional briefing on employer engagement in CTE programs. The briefing, co-hosted by ACTE, the Industry Workforce Needs Coalition and Opportunity America, provided a chance for employers to share their firsthand experiences in working with CTE programs and outline opportunities for federal policy to support their efforts.
In addition to expert voices from business and industry, the event featured remarks from Sens. Tim Kaine (D-VA), Rob Portman (R-OH) and Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), three of the co-chairs of the bipartisan Senate CTE Caucus. Each of them emphasized the critical importance of CTE in filling the skills gap that undermines economic growth and productivity, and pointed to the need for stronger business engagement to help students gain the skills they need for college- and career-success.
Each of the panelists emphasized the priority they place on being involved with CTE programs; both as a means to support their community and to ensure their businesses have access to a strong talent pipeline. Though the strategies their businesses employ varied from equipment donations to apprenticeships, the common thread emerged that employers want to engage with CTE professionals and students to contribute to their success, and look to the federal government to support their efforts through policies including the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act.
To view the full video recording of the event, click here or use the iplayer embedded below.
Posted by Sean Lynch on 02/12/2016 at 02:19 PM in CTE Caucus, In the News, Perkins | Permalink
Late Tuesday, February 9, the U.S. Senate voted unanimously to pass a bipartisan resolution recognizing CTE Month® and the Senate’s support for its goals! The resolution, which was drafted and circulated by Senate CTE Caucus co-chairs Tim Kaine (D-VA), Rob Portman (R-OH), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) and Johnny Isakson (R-GA), was introduced with 17 co-sponsors from both sides of the political aisle.
ACTE Executive Director LeAnn Wilson expressed our support for the resolution in a published statement:
"CTE Month is an opportunity for millions of students and education professionals to share the accomplishments and importance of CTE nationwide, and we are thrilled to celebrate with our partners in the Senate Career and Technical Education Caucus this year... By working with their colleagues to affirm the Senate's support for CTE Month and its goals through this resolution, they have advanced our community's effort to build awareness of CTE's role in preparing all students for the 21st century economy."
This show of support was bolstered by active CTE advocates from across the country, who logged more than 300 phone calls and e-mails to their Senators in response to our previous Legislative Alert regarding a Dear Colleague on the Resolution.
ACTE applauds the bipartisan work to recognize the importance of CTE for all students, and will continue to celebrate CTE Month with our partners nationwide!
Posted by Sean Lynch on 02/10/2016 at 09:45 AM in CTE Caucus, In the News | Permalink
On Wednesday, February 10, from 1:30-3:00 p.m. ET, the Senate Career and Technical Education Caucus will host a congressional staff briefing in cooperation with ACTE, the Industry Workforce Needs Coalition and Opportunity America titled, "Career and Technical Education: The Employer Perspective."
The event will feature a panel discussion moderated by Tamar Jacoby, President, Opportunity America, as well as voices from a range of industries that rely on skilled workers sharing how their business is connecting with workforce training and CTE programs in their communities. The briefing will be webcast live here or in the embedded video player below, and we invite ACTE members to join us virtually for this exciting conversation!
Senate CTE Caucus Co-chairs Tim Kaine (D-VA), Rob Portman (R-OH), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) and Johnny Isakson (R-GA) have been invited for remarks during the briefing. Panelists include:
Posted by Sean Lynch on 02/09/2016 at 01:19 PM in CTE Caucus, In the News, Perkins | Permalink
Senators Tim Kaine (D-VA), Rob Portman (R-OH), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) and Johnny Isakson (R-GA), co-chairs of the bipartisan Senate CTE Caucus, have circulated a letter to their colleagues encouraging them to join them as cosponsors of a resolution to recognize February as CTE Month in the U.S. Senate! This resolution would formally demonstrate the Senate’s support of the goals and ideals of CTE Month, and help to build awareness of CTE among policymakers and education stakeholders in Washington. It is crucial that the resolution has a strong show of support among Senators from all across the country, and we need your help to ensure its success!
Posted by Sean Lynch on 02/01/2016 at 05:31 PM in Action Alerts, CTE Caucus | Permalink
On Monday, November 9, Reps. Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) and Ryan Costello (R-PA) introduced the CTE Opportunity Act, a bipartisan bill to increase access to federal financial aid under the Higher Education Act for students pursuing short-term postsecondary CTE programs that lead to industry-recognized credentials. The legislation has also gained the support of the House CTE Caucus, and is cosponsored by caucus Co-chairs Jim Langevin (D-RI) and Glenn “GT” Thompson (R-PA). Such programs are among the fastest growing CTE opportunities in the nation, and can connect students with the skills and certifications they need to access in-demand, high-wage careers.
ACTE Executive Director LeAnn Wilson endorsed the bill in a formal letter to the sponsoring representatives. In her statement, she said:
“As you know, postsecondary education that leads to industry-recognized credentials is increasingly becoming a valued pathway to career success for America’s students. Unfortunately, these postsecondary CTE students enrolled in short-term programs do not currently have access to critical federal financial aid programs that will empower them to pursue their goals... the CTE Opportunity Act ensures that this vital federal support will be available to students enrolled in short-term CTE programs through financial aid.”
ACTE encourages members and CTE advocates to voice their support for this common-sense legislation on social media. Rep. Duckworth’s staff have developed the below graphics for use in posts about the bill, and suggest supporters use the hashtag #CTEopportunity.
Posted by Sean Lynch on 11/11/2015 at 11:31 AM in CTE Caucus, HEA, Postsecondary Issues | Permalink
Last week, a bipartisan group of Senators took steps to strengthen pathways to the classroom for new CTE teachers by reintroducing the Creating Quality Technical Educators Act. The legislation, introduced by Senate CTE Caucus Co-chairs Tim Kaine (D-VA), Rob Portman (R-OH) and Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), and Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), would create new opportunities for schools to recruit and train professionals for critical CTE educator positions that schools nationwide struggle to fill. By expanding eligibility to the Higher Education Act’s (HEA) Teacher Quality Partnership Grants for partnerships of high-need secondary schools and postsecondary CTE teacher preparation programs, the legislation would create new teacher residency programs that bring new professionals into CTE classrooms and ensure that they are prepared for success.
"The Association for Career and Technical Education applauds Senators Kaine, Portman, Baldwin and Capito for the reintroduction of the Creating Quality Technical Educators Act," ACTE Executive Director LeAnn Wilson said in her statement endorsing the bill. "Their efforts will pave the way for the development of a new generation of educators, while helping to address our nation's critical shortage of CTE professionals... We urge Congress to adopt this legislation as part of a comprehensive reauthorization of the Higher Education Act."
The legislation utilizes existing funds under HEA, and requires that a needs assessment is conducted of participating secondary institutions to ensure that grant recipients will fulfill the needs of local communities. Furthermore, the legislation would deliver ongoing support for these new teachers by providing mentorship and professional development opportunities in addition to pedagogical and technical training. To learn more, click here to access the full press release on Sen. Kaine’s website.
Posted by Sean Lynch on 10/12/2015 at 12:24 PM in CTE Caucus, Educator Development, HEA, In the News, Postsecondary Issues | Permalink
Earlier this week, Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) published an op/ed in the Piqua Daily Call on the challenges facing Ohio’s manufacturing sector, including the growing national skills gap, and strategies he is pursuing in the Senate to overcome them. Portman noted the concerns he has heard from his constituents about the disconnect between the careers available in Ohio (many of which are in advanced manufacturing) and the more than 250,000 individuals who are currently looking for work. Portman cites these concerns as motivation for his work on the Senate CTE Caucus and on legislation to strengthen our nation’s CTE systems and close the skills gap, including the ACTE-endorsed Educating Tomorrow’s Workforce Act.
“My Educating Tomorrow’s Workforce Act would allow Ohio to create more schools like Max Hayes [High School, a career academy] and is a step in the right direction toward helping all young Americans acquire the skills they need to connect with a job,” Portman writes. “Among other things, this legislation would allow states and localities to use Perkins grant funding to establish CTE-focused academies like Max Hayes.”
Policymakers and other education stakeholders often draft op/eds like Senator Portman’s to express their views on pressing issues in the news and their ideas for solutions. To learn more about the Educating Tomorrow’s Workforce Act, click here, and click here to learn how you can draft your own op/eds!
Posted by Sean Lynch on 10/09/2015 at 02:28 PM in CTE Caucus, In the News | Permalink
Today, Senators Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Johnny Isakson (R-GA), Tim Kaine (D-VA) and Rob Portman (R-OH), co-chairs of the Senate CTE Caucus, circulated a letter to the full Senate formally inviting their colleagues to join the Caucus. This bipartisan caucus calls attention to CTE as a proven method for promoting America’s continued economic growth and ensuring that our students have the skills they need to succeed. Current members of the Senate caucus are:
ACTE encourages you to contact your Senators if they are not already a member and encourage them to join. Click here to contact your Senator through the CTE Action Center!
Posted by Sean Lynch on 09/24/2015 at 03:33 PM in Action Alerts, CTE Caucus | Permalink
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