Posts Tagged ‘future’

New Report Shows Slight Increase in State Budgets for FY 2011

Tuesday, December 7th, 2010

A report by the National Governors Association (NGA) and the National Association of State Budget Officers (NASBO) indicates a small glimmer of hope for state budgets in fiscal year 2011. The Fiscal Survey of States found that after two of the most challenging years for state budgets, 2011 will present a slight improvement over fiscal 2010:

Adding to the stress on state budgets, the report points out that fiscal year 2012 marks the beginning of the end of state funding that had been made available by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

“Even with a slight improvement over fiscal 2010, fiscal 2011 is expected to be another very difficult fiscal year for states,” said NGA Executive Director Raymond C. Scheppach. “Spending and revenue is unlikely to return to pre-recession until 2013 or 2014. Since the recession began, states have had significant revenue declines and in order to balance their budgets, have made significant cuts and in some cases enacted tax and fee increases. The end of Recovery Act funding in 2012, along with the growing pension liability and the rise of Medicaid enrollment could further exacerbate the already tight fiscal conditions. Finally, the potential impact of health care reform in 2014 is a real unknown at this time.”

The field survey on which this report is based was conducted by NASBO from August through October 2010.

By admin in Public Policy
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Rep. Kline Outlines Education and Labor Priorities

Wednesday, November 3rd, 2010

With election day behind us and a shift in power in the House that leaves the future of a variety of policy issues uncertain, Rep. John Kline, the current ranking member of the House Education and Labor Committee (and potential chair during the next session), wasted no time in outlining his priorities for the committee. In a press release issued today, Kline set forth broad policy areas that the committee will focus on to “promote American competitiveness and hold government accountable.” Chief among his concerns is job creation and turning around the economy. Other priority issues that the committee will address in the 112th Congress include:

It remains to be seen what impact the change in House leadership and a divided Congress will have on pending legislation such the Elementary and Secondary Education Act and the Workforce Investment Act. Will Congress come together to pass these vitally important pieces of legislation? Or will the gridlock in Washington continue?

By admin in Legislation
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New Federal Career Pathways Funding Toolkit Available

Wednesday, October 13th, 2010

In an effort to support inter-agency state teams to identify and use federal resources that support career pathways and career pathway bridge models, the Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP) has recently released a toolkit to support state planning and design. The resource provides a Funding Options Worksheets and information on ten Federal programs that can interweave the legislative priorities or “braid” the design and development of career pathways and bridges in a more thoughtful and effective manner. The toolkit also may assist teams to identify state policy barriers to using federal resources and strategies for managing the challenges.

More information and links to the toolkit, released as part of its forthcoming Center for Postsecondary and Economic Success, the Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP) is available under Funding Career Pathways and Career Pathway Bridges: A Federal Policy Toolkit for States at

By admin in Career Clusters®, News, Publications, Resources
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White House Launches “Skills for America’s Future”

Tuesday, October 5th, 2010

At a meeting before the President’s Economic Recovery Advisory Board (PERAB) yesterday, President Obama announced a new initiative, Skills for America’s Future, which focuses on improving industry partnerships with community colleges to ensure that students obtain the skills and knowledge they need to be successful in the workforce.

President Obama said, “We want to make it easier to join students looking for jobs with businesses looking to hire. We want to put community colleges and employers together to create programs that match curricula in the classroom with the needs of the boardroom. Skills for America’s Future would help connect more employers, schools, and other job training providers, and help them share knowledge about what practices work best. The goal is to ensure there are strong partnerships between growing industries and community college or training programs in every state in the country.”

To reach these goals, the President has asked members of PERAB to reach out to business and industry and ask them to partner with their local community colleges. The following businesses have already committed to being partners:

The goals of this initiative will help make the United States number one in terms of college graduates by 2020, by ensuring that 5 million community college students graduate and earn certificates by the end of the decade. Skills for America’s Future will be housed at the Aspen Institute, and more information can be found at

By admin in Public Policy
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Department of Education Launches TEACH Campaign

Monday, September 27th, 2010

Over the course of the next 10 years, America will need to fill as many as 1.8 million teaching positions. The Department of Education projects that up to a quarter of current teachers will leave the profession in the next few years, many due to retirement. In an effort to fill these positions, the Department of Education has announced the TEACH Campaign – a recruitment campaign aimed at increasing the number, quality and diversity of people seeking to become teachers, and to raise the profile of the teaching profession. As part of this campaign, the Department has also unveiled a new website,, which they describe as “a revolutionary new website dedicated to providing information, testimonials, and resources for students and prospective teachers – including a new interactive ‘path to teaching’ tool designed to help individuals chart their course to becoming a teacher.”

By admin in News, Public Policy
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White House to Host Community College Summit

Thursday, September 16th, 2010

On October 5, 2010 Dr. Jill Biden will host a White House Summit on Community Colleges. The summit will bring together community colleges, business, philanthropy, federal and state policy leaders, and students to discuss how community colleges can help meet the job training and education needs of the nation’s workforce, as well as the critical role community colleges play in achieving the President’s goal to lead the world with the highest proportion of college graduates by 2020.

The White House is inviting the public to submit their thoughts, questions and challenges for discussion as part of the summit dialogue:

By admin in News, Public Policy
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Senate Hearing on the State of the American Child

Tuesday, August 3rd, 2010

Last week the Subcommittee on Children and Families of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee held the second hearing in a series to address the state of the American child. This hearing looked at the impact of federal policies on children.

Dr. Cecilia Rouse, a member of the President’s Council of Economic Advisers (CEA), told the subcommittee that a CB028331growing number of jobs require workers with greater analytical and interactive skills, but that students are not prepared to enter postsecondary, where they are most likely to acquire these skills. She went on to say that “while the current U.S. education and training system has been shown to provide valuable labor market skills to participants, it could be more effective at encouraging completion and responding to the needs of the labor market.” Her suggestions for improving the system come from CEA’s report Preparing the Workers of Today for the Jobs of Tomorrow which we told you about last summer. She also said that federal legislation such as the Elementary and Secondary Education Act and the Workforce Investment Act would help the United States develop training and education systems that are once again first in the world.

Seth Harris, Deputy Secretary from the U.S. Department of Labor outlined the Department’s proposed “Good Jobs for Everyone” program that would ensure “that young people have access to careers in high growth industries and the skills they need to compete in the global economy.” He went on to stress the importance of WIA youth programs that prepare young adults with the skills and knowledge they need to succeed in 21st century careers and emerging fields such as healthcare and “green” jobs.

Sen. Robert Casey (PA), during questioning, emphasized that there needs to be a comprehensive strategy to bring together all of the agencies and programs that focus on youth so that they are more effective at providing services to and improving the lives of children. He suggested that CEOs and business leaders could play an important role in supporting a strategy for comprehensive reform.

By admin in Public Policy
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Career Technical Education: A Critical Component of States’ Economic Strategy

Friday, July 23rd, 2010

The United States has declined in top rankings in international competitiveness and the nation is fighting to reclaim its spot. The hot button issue has opened a range of discussions on how the United States can best prepare its workforce to compete and excel in this dynamic global economy. That’s where career technical education (CTE) fits in the discussion.

A new issue brief, Career Technical Education: A Critical Component of States’ Economic Strategy, highlights Alabama and South Carolina as model states that transformed their programs to prepare students to compete in the global economy. This issue brief is the first of a five-part series connected with our association’s vision and action plan for CTE and preparing all students to succeed in college and ultimately their careers. Global competition is the theme of one of our five core principles that we plan to address through policy and efforts from the classroom to Capitol Hill.

Alabama and South Carolina provide examples of how states can leverage their CTE programs to attract and retain international companies – from the medical science field to high-tech. These states, realizing that their students are not only competing with their classmates or neighbors in other U.S. regions, took initiative to develop programs that prepared students to compete with students for jobs across the globe.

By admin in Publications, Research
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Dunbar High School Gives Students Competitive Edge

Thursday, July 8th, 2010

Dunbar High School is a magnet school in Fort Myers, Florida which, up until a few years ago, suffered from many of the challenges impacting schools nationwide: decreasing student enrollment, low interest in school, and a risk of minority group isolation. But, new initiatives created a rigorous school curriculum, brought up-to-date equipment to classrooms, galvanized the local business community, and energized students, making learning meaningful, evidenced by performance on statewide assessments. These achievements underscore why Dunbar recently was spotlighted in a report series sponsored by Microsoft Corporation National Career Technical Education Foundation and NCTEF.

Redesigning the High School Experience for College and Career Readiness highlights Dunbar High School’s special feature: Inviting Students to Excellence through Information Technology. Dunbar High School offers 9th-12th grade students an immersive clusters-based curriculum, training them with the skills necessary to achieve multiple industry standard technical certifications for careers such as Technical Specialist, Network Engineering, Web Site Designer and more. Dual enrollment credit and AP courses are also offered for students.

 Initiatives such as – the Academy for Technology Excellence Program and the Academy for Digital Excellence — have created a new vision for the school: providing a rigorous curriculum that leads to a variety of IT industry certifications, equipping students to compete in our fast-paced, technically sophisticated economy.

The student response has been amazing–students are learning and practicing 21st century skills in internship experiences with local business and industry partners, and earning industry-recognized credentials through curriculum completion. Partnership with professional associations has proven to be integral to the school’s success. The academy is a certified Microsoft IT Academy; additionally, the CompTIA Education Foundation, Adobe Education, SW Florida Regional Technology Partnership, Association of Information Technology Professionals, SW Florida PC Users Group, and other school districts with IT programs also offer support to the school and are key partners. Testing fees for students are paid for by the School District of Lee County through the Florida Department of Education Perkin’s grant funds.

The Dunbar High School report is fourth in a series produced in collaboration with the NCTEF and Microsoft Corporation’s U.S. Partners in Learning program. The series showcase success stories of high schools that are creating a different kind of learning experience. In these series, Microsoft’s goal is to stimulate positive change in education, and is investing resources to create new 21st century learning communities, help existing schools such as Dunbar High School transform into 21st century learning communities, develop skilled and innovative leaders, and increase adoption of innovative learning solutions through scale.

Take a virtual tour of the Dunbar experience through a video: Real Life Heroes: Dunbar High School Academy for Technology Excellence

By admin in Publications
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Institute Report Out: Closing General Session Highlights Employer Needs

Thursday, July 1st, 2010

Tim Taylor, Colorado Succeeds

We closed out the 8th annual Career Clusters Institute with a panel discussion lead by Tim Taylor, President of Colorado Succeeds, a coalition of business leaders who focus on education and workforce policy. He explained to the audience that the business community is excited about career pathways because they provide the “why” to students who question the relevance and importance of high school and postsecondary. The panel included Gary Barbosa, Lockheed Martin; Elaine Gantz Berman, Colorado State Board of Education; and Tom Currigan, Kaiser Permanente. Expanding on Mr. Taylor’s point about relevancy, Mr. Barbosa of Lockheed Martin stated that businesses should be part of enticing students to their industries and should be developing talent rather than just being the consumer of talent. He suggested that businesses should offer programs such as internships for teachers as a way to help them teach relevant skills in the classroom.

Ms. Gantz Berman said that Colorado just revised their state education standards to focus more on workforce readiness and 21st century skills, with a big emphasis on CTE.  They are also working on assessments that will be able to test these areas. She was also passionate about the need to get Career Clusters into all of our high schools – to “mainstream it” as she said. But she was not sure how to accomplish this.

Finally, Mr. Currigan of Kaiser Permanente emphasized the need for a skilled workforce. When a company considers moving to region, the first thing they look at is whether there are skilled workers there. In order to keep the workforce in tune with the times, he said each Career Cluster must be continually refreshed to keep up with the changes and new demands from industry. But more important than the specific technical skills required by the job, employers want workers who are able to navigate complexity and who understand connections – skills that the foundational Career Clusters Knowledge and Skills statements help students master.

By admin in Career Clusters®
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