WASHINGTON—The National Governors Association (NGA) released the following statement on the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee’s consideration of the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act:
“With the recent passage of the Every Student Succeeds Act and the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, the critical federal connector of education and workforce – the Perkins Career and Technical Education Act – must be reauthorized.
States have been incubators of innovation for career and technical education as a strategy to prepare students for the future of work, address the skills gap and attract high-demand industries.
The Senate’s bipartisan Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act modernizes Perkins, allowing governors to respond to the rapid evolution of career and technical education by:
- Empowering governors to bring together education and workforce agencies with industry and stakeholders to design a career and technical education plan, create performance metrics and better align resources to ensure students are career-ready;
- Increasing the state leadership reserve to 15 percent and creating opportunities to infuse work-based learning into the career and technical education experience; and
- Aligning Perkins accountability and goals with the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act and the Every Student Succeeds Act.
We applaud the work of Senators Alexander, Murray, Enzi and Casey to craft a bill that will boost skills development for students and accelerate state economies.
The Senate’s Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act balances educational equity with state flexibility. Governors urge the Senate HELP Committee to move this bill forward, and continue refining it with the U.S. House of Representatives, to pass a Perkins that is built for the workforce of now and the future.”