Education

Education

My mother was a teacher, and my wife, Kathryn has taught Elementary School for 40 years, so I know the importance that our teachers play in student’s lives. Our education system serves our children best when the federal footprint is reduced, local control is restored, and parents and local education leaders are empowered to take control of their own education and hold schools accountable for effectively teaching students.

I understand the commitment and sacrifice our nation’s teachers make on a daily basis. Their dedication does not go unrecognized and the positive influence and selflessness that our educators possess is invaluable. Strengthening America’s education system is important in fostering innovation and promoting our economic security.

To better prepare our future workforce with the necessary skills and knowledge to compete in a global economy, we must prioritize workforce development and continue to promote Career and Technical Education (CTE) and Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) programs. Currently, businesses across America are facing a severe talent shortage due to a lack of vocational education and technical training. I am partnering with schools, universities, and local businesses to address the skilled worker shortage and ensure our students have the opportunity to succeed in the 21st century economy. It is our responsibility to prepare students for the demands of our current society and to provide unemployed Americans with an outlet to reintegrate into the workforce.

STEM and CTE programs give students the opportunity to develop a practical skill set to succeed in the 21st-century job market. We can better prepare our professionals of tomorrow by increasing access to dual enrollment CTE training courses today so students can work toward certifications and credentials while still in high school. By taking less than two years, or sometimes even a few weeks to complete, these qualifications provide a more tangible approach to education and qualify students for well-paying jobs. We must better prepare our students and provide them with the necessary skills and knowledge to compete in a global economy.

In Congress, I supported the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act, which is now signed into law. The Perkins CTE program controls over $1 billion in grants for federal, state, and local CTE programs. The reforms include expanding access to CTE programs, helping schools create partnerships with the business community so students can cultivate skills in demand by the labor market, improving and modernizing schools’ CTE programs, and giving states and localities more control over how to spend CTE dollars. I am also a proud cosponsor of H.R. 2831, the BUILDS Act, which provides federal grants to develop a skilled workforce to support our transportation industry. These funds will strengthen our workforce training programs in infrastructure-industry jobs by creating critical partnerships between schools, local businesses, and industry organizations.

My colleague, Rep. Abigail Spanberger and I, introduced the Freedom to Invest in Tomorrow’s Workforce Act, which would give individuals in Virginia and across the country the freedom to use their “529” savings accounts to cover the costs of certain workforce training and credentialing programs. Additionally, the bill would allow students to use their 529 funds to pay for associated costs related to certification exams and maintaining certification credentials. Furthermore, in 2019, I hosted the inaugural meeting of my First District CTE Task Force, which works to bring educators and industry together to encourage teamwork in establishing apprenticeship and internship programs in addition to formulating curriculum to best prepare students to enter the workforce. I have also introduced other pieces of legislation including the PROPEL Act which would expand access to career and technical education by opening up Pell Grants for short-term vocational or technical training, apprenticeships, or on-job training,

STEM and CTE programs give future employees the opportunity to develop a practical skill set to enter the job market more confident and well prepared. We can better prepare our professionals of tomorrow by increasing access to dual enrollment CTE training courses today so students can work toward certifications and credentials while still in high school. By taking less than two years, or sometimes even a few weeks to complete, these qualifications provide a more tangible approach to education and qualify students for well-paying jobs.

My mother was a teacher, and my wife, Kathryn has taught Elementary School for 40 years, so I know the importance that our teachers play in student’s lives. Our education system serves our children best when the federal footprint is reduced, local control is restored, and parents and […]

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